Dominant Murray defeats Giraldo
Andy Murray produced a high-level display to see off Santiago Giraldo 6-3 6-4 6-4 in the third round of the French Open.
There was no sign of the back problems that proved so debilitating in his near miraculous win over Jarkko Nieminen two days ago, with the world number four serving well, moving okay and hitting the ball very cleanly.
Giraldo was a potentially dangerous opponent on clay but Murray ensured he was always in control with one break of serve in each set on Roland Garros' intimate Court 1.
When the 25-year-old was struggling so badly against Nieminen on two days ago, it seemed inconceivable he would still be in Paris in the second week.
But his practice sessions yesterday and this morning offered plenty of encouragement and he began the match with an ace.
Murray had at times been serving at little over 60mph on Thursday, his action reminiscent of a club hacker.
Giraldo won three games in their only previous meeting in Barcelona a few weeks ago but he saw off Australian teenager Bernard Tomic in straight sets in round two to give notice of his talent.
Murray was moving better and playing well and he ramped up the pressure in the sixth game, breaking when Giraldo netted a forehand.
And he wrapped up the set in convincing style with a hold to love after less than half an hour.
Murray showed just how well he has recovered from the back spasm that struck him down on Thursday morning by serving a whole game of aces in the second game of the second set.
Giraldo was playing well but Murray was firmly on the front foot, and the Scot broke serve for the second time to lead 3-2.
Giraldo saved one break point with a forehand winner but when Murray had his man on a string he was not letting go, and the Colombian could only dump a forehand into the net on the next point.
The 25-year-old seemed completely in control of matters but his opponent was showing impressive grit and, with Murray serving for the set, he brought up his first break point.
He could not take it, though, dumping a backhand into the net, and he did not get another chance.
Everything seemed to be working well for Murray, which was just as well because Giraldo was improving as the match wore on.
The 24-year-old Colombian survived a very long game at the start of the third set, saving one break point with a searing forehand cross-court winner.
That forehand was becoming more and more of a feature of the match but Murray kept pressing and in the seventh game he got his reward, taking his third break point when Giraldo netted a backhand.
And that spelled the end for the Colombian as Murray took his second match point with a backhand winner to clinch victory after two hours and two minutes.
The British number one faces Tommy Haas or Richard Gasquet in the last 16.
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