Andy Murray reeled off his fourth consecutive straight-sets win to reach the Wimbledon quarter-finals this evening.
The fourth seed did not play quite as well as he had in his opening three matches but it was still good enough for a 7-5 6-3 6-4 victory over Sam Querrey in a little over two hours.
Murray began superbly but wobbled when serving for the opening set and in the end was fortunate to come through it. One break proved enough in the second and he saved his best form for 4-4 in the decider, when some brilliant shot-making helped him clinch the decisive break.
The 23-year-old, who is the only man in the last eight not to have dropped a set, said: “It was a very good match. I had my chances at the end of the first set. That was a huge point in the match because he had the momentum and I managed to nick it away from him and I played better after that.”
Murray’s serve had not been broken since the third game of his first-round match against Jan Hajek but Querrey went very close in the opening game of the match, just missing an attempted pass at 15-40 before the fourth seed eventually came through.
The American, who is one of the game’s biggest servers, successfully saved a break point in his first service game but he could not match that second time around, dumping an easy volley into the net.
Querrey battled through a lengthy game to make it 4-2 but Murray seemed poised to clinch the set when he made it 40-15 when serving at 5-3.
But suddenly he wobbled, serving a double fault on the second set point and then squandering a third. The Scot could not find a first serve and out of nothing Querrey broke, his forehand proving too hot for the world number four.
The momentum had definitely shifted. Murray’s first-serve percentage had plummeted and a woeful double fault gave Querrey three more break points.
The 22-year-old could not take them, though, and the British number one let out a roar as he won his fifth successive point. Now it was Querrey’s turn to wobble and moments later Murray had two more set points, and this time he sealed it when the American sent a forehand long.
Murray found himself in trouble again at 15-40 in the opening game of the second set but Querrey could not take advantage, and he was quickly made to rue that.
The 18th seed won the AEGON Championships at Queen’s Club earlier this month and was on a nine-match winning streak but he was staring down the barrel at a set and a break down as Murray moved 3-1 ahead.
Some big serving from Querrey helped him recover from 0-40 but the world number four would not let go and a double fault sealed the American’s fate.
The second set was following much the same pattern as the first, meaning a few nerves for the home crowd as Murray came out to serve for a two-set lead at 5-3.
But this time there was no twist in the tale as the fourth seed polished it off with a searing forehand winner.
There were few alarms for either man in the opening stages of the third set, with Murray having the only sniff of a break at 0-30 in the second game only to lose four consecutive points.
The crowd had been fairly muted but they came to life as the Scot played a great defensive point to make it 15-30 at 4-4. He then somehow picked up a drop volley and forced a backhand down the line to set up break point.
Groans greeted a netted backhand but the best game of the match had a happy ending for the British number one as a forehand winner gave him the break after a series of spectacular points.
Querrey threw everything at Murray in an effort to stay in the match but the fourth seed was simply too strong and he wrapped up the victory when the American fired a forehand long.