- Murray beats Rosol 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 to move into second round
- Scottish second seed will next play Spain’s Marcel Granollers
Andy Murray could hardly have made a more satisfying start to the 2016 US Open than he did here on the revamped Arthur Ashe Court in the last night match on Tuesday, demolishing the stubborn Czech, Lukáš Rosol, in under two hours.
The controlled venom of his tennis was markedly at odds with the rash power of his opponent, with whom he shares a bit of history. The Scot did not concede a single break point, converted five of his own and put 11 aces past Rosol to win 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 going away. His serve hummed like a bird on a wire and his technical acumen dazzled a rival who ran out of answers almost within the first quarter of an hour.
Murray will have witnessed the four-set struggle of the world No1 Novak Djokovicagainst Jerzy Janowicz the night before, and will know, but not acknowledge, that the educated money will be shifting sharply his way. In the third round on Thursday, he plays the artful Spaniard, Marcel Granollers, who earlier battled to beat Juan Monaco 7-6 (5), 7-6 (2), 6-4 in four hours and seven minutes.
Murray’s passage to the second round was a stroll by comparison. Even with the roof back, the acoustics on reconstituted Ashe have an echo to them, the crowd’s chatter taking on the hubbub of a crowded bar. We were sat no more than 15 feet behind the umpire’s chair and the “thwack” of the ball sounded less sharp. So at least the players could have sworn at each other with impunity – if there were of a mind.
Both tried their best this week to play down the spat they had in Munich last year – when Rosol shoulder-bumped Murray on a changeover and Murray responded with a rebuke so mild it would have had him laughed out of any pub in Glasgow.
Nevertheless, there was an edge. Rosol’s eyes blazed and in a fast opening he hit every shot with mean intent. Murray stayed cool, inflicting his own brand of retribution, with patient backhand slices, teasing the Czech into over-eager ground strokes.