Andy Murray overcomes Ivo Karlovic to progress at Wimbledon


Andy Murray survived a close encounter with Croatian man mountain Ivo Karlovic to reach the third round at Wimbledon.

It looked a dangerous match for the world number four and so it proved, with Murray making only eight unforced errors but still dropping a set before coming through 7-5 6-7 (7/5) 6-2 7-6 (7/4).

A break of serve at the start of the third set was an important moment for the home hope, and he edged the fourth-set tie-break when his opponent served an untimely double fault.

Murray, who restricted big-serving Karlovic to 17 aces, said: "Winning is all that's really important when you're playing a guy with his game. It's so challenging to get into a rhythm. I did well at the beginning of the third set to get the break.

"With someone like him it's a bit of a lottery but you hope he makes a mistake. He served a double fault in the tie-break and that was the difference. I felt I returned well today. I didn't get aced too many times."

Playing a man 6ft 10in tall, the last thing any player would want is to go down an early break, so dropping serve in the first game was certainly not what Murray's coach Ivan Lendl would have ordered.

Murray is one of the best returners in tennis but challenging Karlovic's serve is something else. However, the Scot proved he was up to the task by breaking straight back, albeit with the help of the net cord.

The flow of the match became more predictable until the 10th game when, with Karlovic serving to stay in the set, Murray found the perfect time to produce some of his best returns, earning him two set points.

He had talked in the build-up about the need not to get frustrated if Karlovic sent down unreturnable serves, and this was certainly one such occasion, the Scot having no chance on either point.

A super backhand return gave him another chance two games later, though, and this time he took it.

Karlovic thought he had served an ace on his second serve but Murray challenged and HawkEye showed it to be out.

Karlovic, watched by countryman and 2001 champion Goran Ivanisevic, kept his opponent at bay well in the second set, showing particularly good touch at the net for a man his size.

It was no surprise when the set went to a tie-break, and it was tight all the way through.

But Murray's passing shots deserted him just at the wrong time and it was Karlovic who took his first set point, a big forehand return putting him on the front foot and a volley clinching the game to level the match.

Murray had understandably started to look a touch frustrated but he had an immediate chance to break at the start of the third set when Karlovic dumped a volley well long, and he took it in fine style with a pinpoint lob.

It was the perfect response from the world number four, who then came through a tight game to ensure he cemented the break.

Murray was beginning to cause Karlovic, a quarter-finalist here in 2009, more trouble on his serve and a succession of good returns earned him a second break in the seventh game.

The 25-year-old had also got his passing game going and Karlovic could only net a volley off a forehand down the line, while Murray easily served out the set.

Two sets to one was a nice cushion but certainly did not mean the match was over, with the fourth seed knowing that one poor game would put him right back in trouble.

He did well to come through a test at 6-5 behind and into another tie-break they went.

The pair exchanged mini-breaks before it was Karlovic who made the crucial mistake, serving a double fault to hand Murray a 5-4 lead with two serves to come.

He did not falter, clinching victory when the Croatian sliced a backhand wide.

The draw does not get easier for Murray, though, with experienced grass-court campaigner Marcos Baghdatis or rising star Grigor Dimitrov up next.


Suggested Topics
Johnny Handle, Northumberland, Ted Relph, President of Lakeland Dialect Society, and Sid Calderbank, Lancashire, founder of the National Dialect Day
newsMeet the enthusiasts determined to stop them dying out
The data shows that the number of “unlawfully” large infant classes has doubled in the last 12 months alone
i100Mike Stuchbery, a teacher in Great Yarmouth, said he received abuse
Arts and Entertainment
The starship in Star Wars: The Force Awakens
filmsThe first glimpse of JJ Abrams' new film has been released online
Rio Ferdinand returns for QPR
sportRio Ferdinand returns from his three-game suspension today
The Speaker of the House will takes his turn as guest editor of the Today programme
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
St Peter’s Seminary in Cardross. Argyll, has remained derelict for more than 25 years
arts + ents

Watch the spoof Thanksgiving segment filmed for Live!
Billy Twelvetrees will start for England against Australia tomorrow with Owen Farrell dropping to the bench
rugbyEngland need a victory against Australia today
Arts and Entertainment
The cover of The Guest Cat – expect to see it everywhere
Tyson Fury poses outside the Imperial War Museum in south London ahead of his fight against Dereck Chisora
boxingAll British heavyweight clash gets underway on Saturday night
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game