Andy Murray ready for clay season - starting in Monte Carlo

The new world number two spent time practising on clay in the USA

Andy Murray starts his clay-court season in Monte Carlo today confident he has never been better prepared for a surface he has not always prospered on.

The new world number two spent time practising on clay in the USA before heading back to Europe and now he has three tournaments in which to hone his game ahead of the French Open.

Murray has twice reached the semi-finals at the Monte Carlo Rolex Masters, where he will meet world 81 Edouard Roger-Vasselin, but feels better prepared than ever.

"I feel good," Murray told http://www.monte-carlorolexmasters.com.

"The movement has been the thing that I needed to improve on clay and I feel like I'm moving better this year.

"It has always taken me a little while to get used to the clay. I expect to give 110 per cent, to work hard in practice.

"If I do that, hopefully the results will be there at the end of the week, or by the French Open I'll be playing good enough tennis to win matches."

Murray received a first-round bye while Roger-Vasselin disposed of Tommy Haas 6-3 6-2.

The British number one prevailed in straight sets when they met at the 2012 Australian Open and Roger-Vasselin is realistic but confident.

"Of course, there's a great gap between the two of us. But in some tournaments, sometimes surprises can happen," he said.

"If there's an opening, I will certainly take it and I'll be there.

"What I need to do is try not to let him play his game. What he likes is to do his own mix, dropshots, higher balls. I need to try to be aggressive and not let him have time to adapt to the surface since it's his first tournament on clay.

"Otherwise it's going to become more and more difficult for me as he will get more familiar with the conditions."

PA

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