Andy Murray beats Tomas Berdych to make US Open final
The Scot overcame fierce winds to beat the Czech and make his fifth grand slam final
ANDY MURRAY powered into the final of the US Open on Saturday evening, defeating not just Tomas Berdych but also the weather.
Heavy rain preceded the semi-final at Flushing Meadow and even after the skies cleared the wind remained fierce. “It was brutal," said Murray after his 5-7 6-2 6-1 7-6 (9-7) victory over his Czech opponent. "The ball was moving, stopping, there were chairs flying. They were some of the hardest conditions I've ever played in and I come from Scotland, so that's saying something."
Neither Murray nor Berdych adapted well to the stormy weather initially but the 6ft 5in Czech took the first set, forcing the Scot to come from behind as he had in the quarter-final when he defeated Marin Cilic.
At one point in the first set Murray’s cap was blown from his head by the wind, prompting umpire Pascal Maria to call a let and order the point to be replayed.
Having taken the second set 6-2 Murray romped through the third as Berdych began making one unforced error after another. Though the No.6 seed rallied in the fourth he still had no answer to the more well-rounded game of Murray that held up better in the appalling conditions. The 25-year-old stayed focused throughout, even ignoring the cups, newspapers and wrappers that were blowing across the Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Murray’s reward for his victory is a place in the final against either defending champion Novak Djokovic or Spain's David Ferrer. Their match was curtailed in the first set because of the tempest and will be concluded today. As a result the men’s final, originally scheduled for Sunday will now be contested on Monday, the fifth consecutive year that weather has forced such a reorganisaiton to the US Open.
Not that Murray minds. He has now moved up to No.3 in the world rankings following his defeat of Berdych, and he received two unexpected visitors to the post-match press conference. A couple of Scottish knights in Sean Connery and Alex Ferguson were in New York to witness their compatriot’s victory and the three of them, along with Murray’s mum, exchanged jokes at the press-conference.
A beaming Ferguson – a regular at Flushing Meadow – told reporters that while it was well known “Scotland invented the world, today we invented the wind".
It will be back to the training court today for Murray as he prepares for Monday’s final, the fifth Grand Slam of his career. He has yet to win any of them and only his current coach, Ivan Lendl, boasts such an unenviable record in the modern era. Asked if he was confident of winning his first major title, Murray replied: "You can never say for sure and I know how tough these events are to win. Novak and David are very tough opponents. Anything can happen in these conditions but I'll give it everything I have." ·