'Listless' Andy Murray in need of a spark at Australian Open

Jan 21, 2013

The Scot cruises into the quarter finals but still needs to find his form

ANDY MURRAY'S impressive run in the Australian Open continued as he made short work of Frenchman Gilles Simon to book his place in the quarter-finals at Melbourne, and the Scot has yet to lose a set at the tournament.

However, the performance was not a convincing one from Murray who seemed agitated and committed 26 unforced errors during the 6-3, 6-1, 6-3 victory, which lasted just 95 minutes.

The British number one had been expected to breeze past Simon, who had failed to recover sufficiently from his previous match against Gael Monfils, a five-set, four-and-three-quarter-hour epic. After that marathon Simon had to be placed on a drip and it was obvious that he was still struggling.

"Simon simply did not have the legs to test Murray, who sensibly had him on the move from the word go," said the BBC.

But Murray was unhappy with his game and his demeanour betrayed his frustration with his form according to The Guardian. "He advances to the quarter-finals in a mean mood," the paper said.

"That might be no bad thing, as he needs to address issues of focus and application."

Murray faces another Frenchman, Jeremy Chardy, in the next round and he will present a rather sterner challenge.

"The fifth match of this Melbourne odyssey will be nothing like the fourth, unless Chardy is overcome by the occasion," warned The Times.

But Murray may need a tough game to get himself into gear. "Without any genuine competition to feed off, Murray seemed listless and sluggish," noted the Daily Telegraph. "Murray hasn't dropped a set in his four matches to date, yet neither has he switched on his best form."

If he does beat Chardy then he is likely to face first Roger Federer and then Novak Djokovic in a repeat of last year's final.

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