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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Thursday March 9, 2023

Andy Murray

The Scot rallied for a hard-fought first round victory on Thursday at Indian Wells.

Photo Source: AP

Murray magic. What else is new?

2023 has been a non-stop ride full of drama, triumph and tension for three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray, and the ride appears to be just beginning.

Tennis Express

Murray was at it again on Thursday at Indian Wells, edging Argentina’s Tomas Martin Etcheverry in a three hour and 12-minute affair, 6-7(5), 6-1, 6-4, to book a second-round clash with No.15-seeded Pablo Carreno Busta.

Murray used the word frustrating to describe the match. He earned 20 break points, including eight in the final set, and wasn't able to lock down his advantage in the decider until converting his fifth break point of the 11th game, with Etcheverry serving at 5-5.

"I'm proud of the way I got through that, the way that I kept going, even though I was finding it frustrating, and manage to find a way to win," he said.

Murray improves to 7-0 in deciding sets with his victory, and 29-14 overall at Indian Wells. He didn’t need to save match points today, like he has done in three of his victories this season, but he did manage to save four of five break points.

Murray, who is 4-3 overall when losing the first set this season, credits his improved fitness for his success in his marathon matches in 2023.

"I don't think it is a coincidence, but last year I lost a lot of them," he said of his 7-0 record in deciders, on court after the win. "I was talking to my team about it, just saying like the law of averages... this can't keep going.

“Once I won one I did feel like I would start to feel more comfortable in those situations. Thankfully that's been the case. Obviously winning all seven, I'm aware that at some stage I'm going to lose one of them.”

Murray has said on several occasions that he feels better on court than he has in years. It shows in his ability to grind out hard-fought victories.

"I worked very hard in the offseason to put myself in a great position physically, and I feel very motivated,” he said. “Even when I've gotten behind in matches I've kept fighting, kept trying to find solutions... I won some matches that certainly if some of these matches were played last year I wouldn't have won them."


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