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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Tuesday June 15, 2021

 
Andy Murray

Andy Murray played his first singles match on grass in three years, and was quite emotional after his victory.

Photo Source: Getty

Andy Murray is back on the grass—and back to his winning ways on the surface.

The 34-year-old who now owns a 108-21 lifetime record on the surface, played his first singles match on grass since 2018 and came through with flying colors, taking down Benoit Paire, 6-3, 6-2, to book a second-round clash with top-seeded Matteo Berrettini.

Tennis Express

It was a solid performance for Murray, who just looks so comfortable on the grass. The first two days of the tournament at Queen’s Club in London have seen numerous players take tumbles on the slick grass, and even Murray lost his balance after a split step at the baseline at one point, but for the most point he was sure-footed and confident as he marched past Paire.

Murray never had to face a break point and he converted all three break opportunities he saw against the bearded Frenchman, who is currently ranked 46 in the world but has won just twice in 18 appearances in 2021.

After the match, Murray let his emotions out during an interview, as he broke down momentarily before explaining how much it meant to him to be back on the court.

“I love it. I love playing tennis,” he said, before needing a moment as the crowd burst into applause. “Obviously competing is why you put in all the hard work, and in the last few years I’ve not got to do that as much as I would have liked.”


After the match in a press conference, Murray tried to explain what he was feeling.

“First singles match I got to play on grass in three years,” he said. “Not a lot of stuff has happened in that period, as well. It's not like, you know, a whole lot has gone on. Yeah, I was just happy to be out there playing, doing well.


Murray says he is most proud of his own ability to push through the myriad setbacks he has encountered over the last few years.

“There is obviously a lot of doubts as well like when you haven't hardly played, but then, you know, like I kept saying, in the back of my mind and in practice and stuff, like I put in so much work and have done so much good stuff, like in practice, you know, I'm really proud of what my attitude has been like in terms of feeling the various setbacks and everything and kept going,” he said. “Yeah, that's probably what it was. I mean, it's obviously difficult to put a finger on one thing exactly, but lots of things that went into it.”

Top Seeds Go Through

It was a solid day for Matteo Berrettini and Denis Shapovalov who each needed two tiebreakers to win in straight sets on Tuesday.

Berrettini took down Stefano Travaglia, 7-6(5), 7-6(4), while Shapovalov took down Aleksandar Vukic 7-6(6), 7-6(6). The Canadian fired 20 aces and saved three set points in the second-set tiebreaker.

Fourth-seeded Alex de Minaur (d. Djere), sixth-seeded Dan Evans (d. Popyrin) and eighth-seeded Fabio Fognini (d. Lu) made it a perfect five for five for seeds on Tuesday in London.

 

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