Andy Murray beats James Duckworth on Center Court – on sport news

sport, Tennis, Wimbledon 2022: Andy Murray beats James Duckworth on Center Court

Britain’s Andy Murray maintained his unbeaten first-round record at Wimbledon with an encouraging victory over Australian James Duckworth.

After a slow start, possibly as a result of a recent stomach injury, Murray found his rhythm and quality to shine.

The former world number one, now ranked 52nd, won 4-6 6-3 6-2 6-4 at 21:35 BST under the spotlights on Center Court.

The 35-year-old Scot will now face American John Isner, the 20th seed, in the second round on Wednesday.

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“It’s great to be back here again with a full crowd,” said Murray, a two-time Wimbledon champion.

“I’m starting a bit now so I don’t know how many chances I’ll get here.

“I’m glad I made it through and hopefully I’ll get another game here at the Center in a few days.”

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Murray eliminates injury worries in boosting performance

Questions have been asked all week about Murray’s fitness and he answered with more than a little trepidation last Monday when revealing he was incapable of hitting certain strokes – counts as serve.

An abdominal injury picked up in the Stuttgart final earlier this month has hampered his progress in an encouraging grasscourt season and prevented him from playing at Queen’s Club.

But as the week went on, and he was seen in practice at Wimbledon hitting serve, it seemed clear he would be fine to get back to his best winning spots.

Of course, the intensity of the match is a different situation to train in and it took him a while to find his rhythm with his serve.

But once he did, Murray looked completely comfortable against world number 74 Duckworth.

“The stomach feels really good today,” said Murray, who added another scan this week showed the injury had healed.

While Murray isn’t particularly old-fashioned, there are plenty of quality moments to keep the enthusiastic home crowd entertained.

There was even a chance for Murray to serve under the arm – rarely seen in his career – in the third set which drew laughter from the fans.

But the main point for those who stayed late into the night was the 2013 and 2016 champions, a dangerous floater unseeded in the draw, looking fit enough to cause trouble for more opponents in the past two weeks.

Murray moves forward to win

Murray’s slow start allowed Duckworth to successfully implement his intended plan to play aggressively and dictate points.

With Murray often trailing, he struck a forehand into the net for a break point at 4-4 and Duckworth picked it up with a forehand winner to serve for the set.

Another blast from the wing sealed the Australian’s opener, leaving the home fans on Center Court muttering their shock.

Murray started to land more first serves in the second set, giving him the runway to quickly put the pressure back on Duckworth.

Murray dropped just two points in his serve play, helped by landing more first serves and winning 100% of the points.

His return game is also starting to improve, with Murray highlighting that as a key factor in the turnaround.

Like Murray, Duckworth also saw his career hampered by injury and underwent hip surgery earlier this year.

Since returning in May, he has played just eight games – losing six of them – and the adrenaline alone will never be enough to win a five-set match at a Grand Slam.

Murray’s superior qualities continued to shine through in the third quarter, dominating for a 4-1 lead before digging deep to relieve the pressure in the next service game.

With the court getting darker, Duckworth wanted the roof closed and the floodlights turned on but had to wait until Murray finished the third set.

The fourth set was carefully arranged with no serve until two double faults from Duckworth at 4-4 allowed Murray to snatch victory.

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