Britain’s Andy Murray has made the 2013 Wimbledon Men’s Singles Semi-Final after coming back from two sets to love down in his quarter final match with Spain’s Fernando Verdasco.
The Scot dropped the opening couple of sets before digging deep to eventually win the match 4-6 3-6 6-1 6-4 7-5.
An out-of-sorts Murray looked to be limping out of the tournament, before he showed his steel to produce some excellent tennis, particularly in the final two games.
A 20 shot rally turned the match at 5-5 30-30 in the fifth set. Murray and Verdasco both dug deep to return difficult balls, but the Scot proved just the stronger to win the point, and grab a much needed break point, in front of a roaring centre court. Moments later, the crowd were on their feet again as Murray blasted good shots into the corner and Verdasco failed to return.
Murray showed his class to serve out the match to love before his Spanish opponent congratulated him on winning on a day when he had looked to be on his way out of the tournament he wants more than any other.
This fifth set was necessary as a result of Murray’s lower first serve percentage in the opening couple of sets. Verdasco had, in truth, won the opening set a little fortuitously, though, as Murray had not given away a break point until erring serving to go level on games, 5-5. When called upon to face this break point, Murray produced a tame double fault, and found himself a set down after doing little else wrong in the opening 10 games. Such is the tennis scoring system: key points are vital.
In the second, Murray got the first break of serve early, and it seemed like business as usual – for Murray had not lost a set until this match – was to resume. Not a bit of it. If anything, Verdasco was the one to play the better following this, and he quickly overturned the break, and then went a break ahead, before racing away to win 6-3.
Murray collected himself, and in the third was back to the sort of form home fans were hoping for leading into this match, as he blew Verdasco away 6-1.
The next set Murray got on top early and, serving first, looked the stronger of the two throughout, before grabbing a timely break to set up a vital fifth set.
With Verdasco serving first, and continuing to hit powerful first – and second – serves, the match see-sawed one way and the next game by game, with both players having to draw on reserves of both energy and courage before, at 5-5, and 30-30, the turning point of the match came. After a 20 shot rally, which Murray won, the Scot, at 30-40 was leading the match for the first time. A key point came at a key point. Verdasco’s powerful serve faltered a hint. Murray grabbed his opportunity with both hands, rising to the challenge to hit some of his most fluent strokes more than three and a quarter hours into the match, and grab a vital break of serve to lead 6-5.
With the break won, the match soon followed, and a resolute looking Andy Murray was soon shaking hands as the quarter final victor at Wimbledon 2013.
With his side of the draw open after several big names fell in earlier rounds, Murray will face the winner of 24th seed Janowicz and unseeded Kubot in the Semi-final on Friday to set up a likely final with either Djokovic or Del Potro in his efforts to become the first British man to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936.