BBC BLOGS - Jonathan Overend
« Previous | Main | Next »

Murray magic returns in Rome

Post categories:

Jonathan Overend | 22:38 UK time, Tuesday, 27 April 2010

The real Andy Murray returned to the tennis court on a cold evening at the Rome Masters - and it was a sight for sore eyes.

He beat Andreas Seppi for the loss of just six games with a stylish display full of vitality and variety. Best of all, we were able to welcome back an old friend - the Murray backhand.

The world number five pumped them up the line with his strong two-hander, he guided them cross court with spin, he even produced one low volley from a deep position which spun over the head of Seppi for a winner.

murray595.jpgMurray was back to winning ways with a 6-2 6-4 win over Seppi

The Italian may have fluked a spectacular through-the-legs shot near the end but Murray's artistic impression was better. This was a fine performance that, thankfully, put an end to the losing sequence and questions about his form.

After losing to Robin Soderling at the quarter-final stage in Indian Wells, defeats to Mardy Fish in Miami and Philipp Kohlschreiber in Monte Carlo were peculiar offerings from the normally reliable British number one.

It had been four years since a similar sequence of three reverses in a row. But here in the Italian capital Murray began resolutely, refusing to miss, going for old fashioned line and length. By starting with the basics, he was able to build a formidable performance that Seppi never got close to matching.

Murray may play David Ferrer in the next round, a fine clay-courter from Spain who faces Potito Starace on Wednesday. This remains a tough tournament for Murray to win due to the quality which invades every section of the draw.

At least he has been able to celebrate the feeling of converting a match point here at the Foro Italico for the first time. The ace to do it summed up the excellence of the evening.


  • Comment number 1.

    Dear lord, a few bad matches, then he's called 'dismal' and out of form, rubbish, and will soon drop out of the top 200. One good match, and now he's challenging for the world no.1 spot, and afavourite for every tournament in the calendar.

  • Comment number 2.


    Where in this article did you read any of that?

  • Comment number 3.

    A score of 6-2 6-4 is not "for the loss of just five games".

    Good match for Murray, sure, but did it really need a blog? I'm a huge fan, but no wonder his detractors complain of hype.

  • Comment number 4.

    Not sure if I should bother posting to this , the last time I commented on your Murray reporting I was deleted by the moderators for suggesting that you regurgitae old stories into new. And thats what we've got here. References to the 3 matches he's lost, and now he's won a match we have words like excellence.

  • Comment number 5.

    the voiceofreason - but it was an excellent 'evening'...Murrey played very well, so what is wrong with saying it was an excellent evening?

    And old news is always regurgitated. Much of what everyone says in any context is regurgitation. How many times have we each told the same story to one or more people and then again to some of those. Regularly I suspect. BTW, if you don't want to read more regurgitation by this or any author/blogger/writer then I have a suggestion...don't read it. Or if you feel so compelled [rather than are compelled by some other force or person] just don't bother commenting. Simple.

  • Comment number 6.

    Oh dear oh dear!!! Now I see why there is recession - this blogger must keep on working to earn a living, regardless. Does this really need a blog? Would it not have been better blogging over Robson's progress in the rankings? And this is even before I read your blog!! But I will be back to see if there is something in it to read.

  • Comment number 7.

    What's more interesting than the initial blog, is the wooden top replies from AM haters.
    You guys make me smile. :-)

  • Comment number 8.

    He played OK but is still hitting the ball far too shallow for my liking. Seppi is a player who looks, moves and hits the balls like a top player, but rarely backs it up with substance.

    It was decent result nothing more or less.

    We'll see in his next match (Ferrer?) whether Murray has really got over his 'hump'.

  • Comment number 9.

    Fantastic result considering Murray's record in Rome, only won win against Del Potro in that Mother match.

    Welcome back Mr 'Australian Open' Murray, as I have said over the last few weeks it's only a matter of time before it clicks and hay presto! His focus is back and so is his tennis brain and the nerves have gone. No more snatched shots into the net or pathetically dumped balls in the net.

    I said before we started this week that a win and a tight loss would be good. But after that performance against Seppi who is no mug, anyone can beat anyone in tennis, I seriously think that he will beat Ferrer and go deep thus reclaiming the #4 from sick note Del Potro

  • Comment number 10.

    Beating a one dimensional type like Seppi means nothing at all. He doesnt have the spin or power to trouble anyone decent on clay. Lets see how Murray does against the genuine clay courters in the next few matches. My guess is not very well.

  • Comment number 11.

    Lol I forgot how bad the comments section on any blog is before I started reading them and got sucked in. You guys know what a 'blog' is right? By definition it's an online journal where you post your thoughts and feelings. So what on earth made you come here and comment on the 'necessity' of a blog talking about a sports reporters thoughts and feelings on a sporting event?? Just ridiculous cricism from people that love nothing more than to criticise.

    As for the performance, I wasnt able to watch it but I'm glad he's back to winning ways. As the blogger attempted to point out, it's not the just the fact that he had a bad run of form but that he was playing really bad. I am interested in knowing your thoughts on his serving in this match? Was it improved? Consistent?

  • Comment number 12.

    I think its just more hype that Murray could do without to be honest. Since when did the world number 5 beating someone ranked 40 odd merit a story? And as for magic - Murray basically played his usual game and let Seppi beat himself. I didnt see much magic there to be honest. Magic is watching Rafa Nadal destroy a class player like Verdasco for the loss of one game.

  • Comment number 13.

    I'm confused, Jonathan is a Tennis reporter for BBC, He has the ask of offering his opinions on the game, probably daily or weekly (I've not looked at how often he does so) but he just posts an updated blog and for those who did not see match his thoughts on Murray's form are valid and current after his recent bad run. Being as he is the only world class player we have in UK it is likely most of his updates will be concerning Murray so again I ask who else is he to blog about this week. Other than giving a shout out to Robson (but breaking into top 300 is hardly the pinacle of acheivement) what about the other 5 higher ranked female players, should he dedicate time to their runs in lower level tourneys.

  • Comment number 14.

    When can getty images produce a photo of Andy that's not mouth wide open and hardly flattering.
    The image on this blog is spot on, a study in concentration and determination.
    Good win against a tricky local opponent. Need to build from here.

  • Comment number 15.

    its too early to say he is back to his best. it may just be that Seppi just plays into his strategy and doesn't offer him any real dangers remember he's already beaten him this year. it is nice though to see him win a match. he served much better but can do better. let's see how he handles Ferrer who is quite adept on clay

  • Comment number 16.

    That Seppi hotdog winner in the last game was NOT a fluke, that was class.

  • Comment number 17.

    Oh come on. The hype around Murray is rediculous. One moment he's terrible and finished, the next he's greater than Federer and Nadal combined. The fact is that he is a solid player without any out-of-this-world flair or fight of the aforementioned. On any given day when his mind is not in the right place he'll be beaten by anyone, much like Djokovic only without the slam to his name, as the Ferrer loss demonstrated. Let's get real.

  • Comment number 18.


    Murray was expected to lose to Ferrer as Murray is not a clay courter. Ferrer is. But you can't tell people like yourself. You just moaned about the hype, now your doing the exact thing you accused others off.

  • Comment number 19.

    the truth is that he has been very poor after the aussie open final characterised mainly by his poor first serve the only person he's beaten after the aussie open is Seppi twice so all this stuff about magic can only be described as nonsense and like someone said earlier maybe Mr. Overened has to just his salary by writing regular blogs which to be honest would have been better spent on Watson and Robson rise up the ranking particularly Robson who is after all a part timer and only plays when she gets time of school and as such whose rise is all the more remarkable.
    its very interesting that Murray always talk about his off field work he does and how well he's been hitting the balls in training when the main problem with his game has been a very poor first serve. he might as well start serving underarm

  • Comment number 20.

    'the only person he's beaten after the aussie open is Seppi twice'

    Another poster who doesn't know what they are talking about. Murray has beaten; Igor Kunitsyn; Andreas Seppi(x2), Michael Russell and Nicolas Almagro.

    And another person who as well attacks the journalist who has written the blog. If you don't like it don't read. But Murray is the #1 and more high profile than anyone else, so he is going to comment. Take your prejudice somewhere else

  • Comment number 21.

    I love it!!! - Overend declares Murray is back and then Murray promptly loses in straight sets to Ferrer in the next match!!! No Disgrace in losing to Ferrer, a more than decent clay courter, but the overall British Media and commentators desperation for Murray to win is nauseating. He loses a few matches and it's what's wrong with him; he suddenly wins one match and it's "He's Back".

    Judge him at the Grand Slams - that's what ultimately defines great players, not these Masters 1000s.

  • Comment number 22.

    Theres an element of truth in saying we should judge him at the Grand Slams yes. But too often Murray is quoted as saying he has to manage his schedule well and focus on the slams. He also often says how Federer and Nadal dont play Davis Cup and uses that as justification for him not playing. I think he needs to wake up and smell the coffee.

    Federer has 16 slams and is 28 years old. When he was Murrays age he was competing hard in every Masters event and winning a large number of them. For Murray at his young age, with no slams under his belt, to be trying to emulate someone who has won 16 is a little strange if you ask me. He should just get out there and try to win every match he can regardless of the event.

  • Comment number 23.

    Absolutely disgraceful bias that the Seppi through the legs winner is classified as a "fluke" Whereas if Murray had done it, it would be labelled as "genius" and "magic" I'm sure.

  • Comment number 24.

    Some folk are just born to whinge.
    I haven't seen Murray play for a while and I Have been concerned about his form. Losing three in a row is unusual for a top player and concerning for Murray fans. How can one say it is not news to report any sort of welcome return to form.
    Nobody suggested he is going to win the next slam - just nice to see he appears to be on the mend. Hopefully ;)


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.