Paris Masters | Djokovic and Murray through to third round

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Paris Masters | Djokovic and Murray through to third round

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SportsCafe Desk

11/03/2016

Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray moved into the third round at the Paris Masters while third seed Stan Wawrinka was knocked out by unseeded German Jan Struff. Djokovic won in straight sets while Murray had to withstand extreme pressure from Fernando Verdasco to win in three.

Djokovic easily dispatched off Giles Muller 6-3, 6-4 in 80 minutes. The Serbian world No 1 broke Muller in the fifth game to take a 4-2 lead before clinching the opening set.

The second set turned out much closer as both players played their natural game. With the score at 4-4, Djokovic upped his tempo to break Muller for the second time before closing out the match on serve in the next. The Serbian will now face Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov.

It was world No 2 Murray’s first match of the tournament and the opening set lasted over half an hour as both players turned in strong service games. A Verdasco error in the sixth game handed Murray the initiative which the Briton was happy to take and closed out the set at 6-3.

The second set was keenly contested as Verdasco raced to a 4-2 lead after breaking Murray. The next three games witnessed breaks of serve with Murray coming back to nullify Verdasco's advantage. But the Spaniard would not be undone as he closed out the set on tie-break at 7-6 (5).

Murray took an early lead in the decider but Verdasco broke back instantly as the match headed for a gripping finish. With the score at 6-5, Murray finally cracked the Verdasco serve to win 7-5. The Scotsman will next face local talent Lucas Pouille.

US Open champion Wawrinka provided the first upset of the Paris Masters, losing to 91-ranked Jan Struff in his tournament opener. Wawrinka broke the German in the second game of the opening set. Struff displayed tenacity in the very next game that lasted an incredible 21 points, although he failed to convert any of his six break point opportunities. The Swiss won the set 6-3.

The second witnessed a brilliant display of serves by both players with just one break point being conceded in the set. Struff maintained his cool to win the tie-breaker 8-6.

The decider saw the players trade breaks and the score level at 5-5 before Wawrinka fluffed a break point opportunity. The Swiss thereafter crumbled under pressure in the tie-breaker 7-1. Struff, who won 3-6, 7-6, 7-6, will face American John Isner in the next round.

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