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By Chris Oddo

Andy Murray

(August 9, 2012) -- Andy Murray is most certainly a different player this year, and you don’t need a statistical analysis to come to that conclusion. Still, we went rummaging through the numbers to find out if there were any statistics that could help elucidate the reasons for Murray’s spectacular, gold-medal-winning summer.

It turns out there were. Whether by stroke of luck or stroke of genius, Murray has done a better job of protecting his serve this summer, particularly in the clutch.

The numbers, particularly on grass, are astounding.

Not much has been said of the fact, but Murray saved break points at an alarming rate on grass this season. Here’s a look at Murray’s percentage of break points saved numbers, on grass and overall, from 2006 to 2012:

% BREAK POINTS SAVED, ALL SURFACES

SEASON

% BREAK POINTS SAVED, ON GRASS

69

2012

78

61

2011

62

64

2010

71

65

2009

66

63

2008

71

60

2007

DID NOT PLAY

56

2006

63


The numbers showed that Murray did a fantastic job of knocking back break points on grass this year, and while there are surely many reasons for Murray’s elevated success on grass in 2012 (he made his first Wimbledon final and won the Olympic gold), the fact that he was more efficient -- and perhaps more importantly more aggressive--while facing break points than ever before can’t be a bad thing. For further proof, I looked back at Murray’s serving numbers for his career, both on all surfaces and on grass:

ANDY MURRAY

GRASS

ALL SURFACES

% BP’S SAVED 2012

78

69

% BP’S SAVED CAREER

69

62


Murray is saving break points at a much better clip, both on grass and overall. It’s not the only reason that Murray’s having more success in 2012, but I do believe that it is evidence that Murray is finally starting to deliver bigger, better serving under pressure. If this is indeed a trend rather than an aberration, expect Murray’s excellent results at Wimbledon and the Olympics to be a recurring theme.

 
(Photo Credit: Getty)

 

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