World No. 2 Andy Murray put down some early resistance by Roberto Bautista Agut, beating the Spaniard 7-6(1), 6-1 in the Shanghai Rolex Masters final on Sunday.
Bautista Agut had upset world No. 1 Novak Djokovic in the semifinals. With three tournaments left on his schedule including the year-end championships, and Djokovic’s wavering motivation, Murray is seeing the opportunity to steal the top spot.
“I believe I can get there,” the Brit said. “I definitely believe I can get there. These last few months have proved that to me. I’ll give it my best shot to do it, because I may never get another chance.”
It was the sixth title of the year for Murray, the 13th career Masters title, and 41st overall title.
“I did feel like I played better this week than last week,” Murray said. “In all of the matches I was hitting the ball pretty clean.”
The Shanghai title comes on the heels of the China Open crown last week in Beijing, and sees the Brit on a 10-match winning streak winning all 20 sets.
Some more Murray numbers from the ATP: Murray has now won six tour-level titles in a season for the first time since 2009. By winning his 41st title, the 29-year-old ties former Swedish No. 1 Stefan Edberg for 15th place on the Open Era titles list. Murray also passes Aussie Lleyton Hewitt for 20th place on the Open Era match wins list with his 617th career match victory.
Bautista Agut had won Auckland and Sofia this year, and fell to 2-2 in finals this year and 4-5 career.
“I’m going to learn from all the success I had this week,” Bautista Agut said. “It’s going well.”
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