Murray’s Misery Mounts; Raonic Blasts Blake, Berankis Next at San Jose
I spoke briefly yesterday of Sam Querrey’s sorry state. After his first round performance in Rotterdam you can add Andy Murray to that club. In his opener on Wednesday Murray was manhandled by Marcos Baghdatis 6-4, 6-1.
Murray actually led 3-0 until the bottom fell out. The Scot ended losing 12 of the next 14 games in suffering his earliest exit from a tournament in almost a year.
“I started the match really well, but then started missing quite a lot; I made quite a lot of mistakes,” said Murray after losing his 5th straight set without seeing even a set point. “You need to be very sharp with your movement on a surface like that and maybe I wasn’t. Marcos played very well.”
By that scoreline, Andy, no, you weren’t very sharp.
As I said before the match this was going to be a test of where Murray was mentally. Baghdatis is a very good player but that lopsided score tells me he’s no where close to being right between the ears.
Murray is next scheduled to play Dubai before coming to the U.S. for Indian Wells and Miami. Those are three events he should do well at but clearly his mind will dictate. And for Murray it is a tough spot, do you play through it our take time off? Unfortunately, there’s no right answer.
Staying in Rotterdam, JW Tsonga and Tomas Berdych were winners Wednesday. On tap today Berdych plays Dmitry Tursunov (remember him?), Robin Soderling gets Kohlscreiber and Bagdatis meets Feliciano Lopez.
Here on the West Coast, promising Canadian Milos Raonic continues to make a name for himself. The 20-year-old took out James Blake 6-2, 7-6(4) to advance to the San Jose quarterfinals. The 6-foot-5 Raonic hit 13 aces in beating Blake, who is a guy going in the exact opposite direction than Milos.
“I’m playing well, I’m playing confident and doing the things I need to do – serving well, taking care of my serve and putting pressure on return games,” said Raonic. “Everything’s coming together. I’m utilizing opportunities, but this wasn’t just a thing that clicked. It was a lot of hard work and a very good off-season.”
Roanic now meets another 20-year-old, Richard Berankis, on Friday.
“We’re the exact same age, we grew up together,” said Raonic. “He’s seen a lot of me and I’ve seen a lot of him. We get along. We’ve hit a few times over the last few weeks, in Australia and here, so I look forward to that match.”
Today, Wednesday winners Fernando Verdasco and Gael Monfils return along wth Lleyton Hewitt and Juan Martin Del Potro.
And at the Paris WTA stop, Kim Clijsters turned away Kristina Barrois in three sets. The victory puts the Belgium just one win from reclaiming the No. 1 ranking. In the Friday quarterfinals she’ll play the winner of the Jelena Dokic-Nadia Petrova match.
ROTTERDAM THURSDAY SCHEDULE
CENTRE COURT start 11:00 am
[Q] D Tursunov (RUS) vs  T Berdych (CZE)
 I Ljubicic (CRO) vs [Q] B Paire (FRA)
F Lopez (ESP) vs M Baghdatis (CYP)
J Benneteau (FRA) / J Tsonga (FRA) vs A Murray (GBR) / J Murray (GBR)
Not Before 7:30 PM
T de Bakker (NED) vs  M Youzhny (RUS)
 R Soderling (SWE) vs P Kohlschreiber (GER)
SAN JOSE THURSDAY SCHEDULE
CENTER COURT start 9:45 am
M Russell (USA) vs  D Istomin (UZB)
Not Before 11:15 AM
 K Nishikori (JPN) vs [WC] T Smyczek (USA)
B Dabul (ARG) vs  L Hewitt (AUS)
[WC] B Klahn (USA) / R Thacher (USA) vs A Falla (COL) / X Malisse (BEL)
L Lacko (SVK) vs J Del Potro (ARG)
Not Before 7:00 PM
 F Verdasco (ESP) vs I Karlovic (CRO)
R Kendrick (USA) vs  G Monfils (FRA)
Also Check Out:
Querrey Losing Streak Hits Six in San Jose, Del Potro Wins; Murray Returns in Rotterdam
Roddick Battles Berankis in Memphis; Querrey, Fish Blake Also in Action
Roddick Upset; Scary Del Potro Blasts Berdych in Rotterdam, Awaits Federer?
Roddick Leads Five Americans into Memphis 2nd RD; Verdasco v. Raonic Rematch Tonight
Nadal, Del Potro, Murray Lead Way as March Madness Begins at Indian Wells