Andy Murray sprints into Australian Open quarter-finals with swift demolition of Gilles Simon

British number one beat opponent in straight sets

There have been some marathon matches in this Australian Open but Andy Murray seems to be interested only in sprints.

The 25-year-old Scot won in straight sets for the fourth round in succession here today when he beat Gilles Simon 6-3, 6-1, 6-3 in just an hour and 35 minutes. Murray is through to his ninth consecutive Grand Slam quarter-final, in which he will face another Frenchman, Jeremy Chardy.

Even Novak Djokovic, the world No 1, has had his endurance tested here this year, having taken more than five hours to beat Stanislas Wawrinka in the longest match of the tournament on Sunday night. Simon, meanwhile, had featured in the third longest match, a five-set victory over Gael Monfils on Saturday that had taken four hours and 43 minutes. That was just 47 minutes less than Murray had spent on court in his first three matches.

Simon, who has never gone beyond the quarter-finals at a Grand Slam tournament, had looked shattered at the end of his third-round victory. The world No 16 had clearly not had enough time to recover for today's match, especially for a contest against someone as good as Murray. Having had to call for a trainer in the third set, he was barely moving on some points by the end.

"I just had to try to focus on my side of the court," Murray said afterwards. "Gilles is one of the best movers on the tour but he was struggling with his movement today. That's what Grand Slam tennis is like today. It's tough."

Simon said he had been expecting a difficult day. "I did all I could for the last two days to play this one," he said. "It was a painful hour and a half on the court."

Given that Murray had won his previous nine matches against Simon, dropping only two sets in the process, the Scot would still have been the favourite even if his opponent had been firing on all cylinders. No player has suffered more defeats at the hands of Murray than the Frenchman.

The match, played in early-evening warmth at the end of a beautiful day, was a non-contest. For much of it Murray appeared to be playing at three-quarter pace, happy to conserve his energy for the greater challenges that will lie ahead.

Murray was quickly on his way, breaking in the opening game, and took the first set in 36 minutes after breaking for a third time. The only game Simon won in the second set was on the Scot's serve. The Frenchman improved marginally in the early stages of the third set, but he had treatment on his right knee after the fifth game and offered little more than token resistance thereafter. Murray put a forehand into the net on his first match point but on the second he hit a winning forehand pass.

Chardy reached his first Grand Slam quarter-final with a 5-7, 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 victory over Italy's Andreas Seppi. Murray has won four of his five matches against Chardy, but the world No 36 won their most recent meeting in Cincinnati last summer. The 25-year-old Frenchman, who beat Juan Martin del Potro in the third round, is an aggressive ball striker with a big serve and powerful forehand, but he sometimes struggles for consistency.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beat Richard Gasquet 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 in a confrontation between two more Frenchmen. He will next meet the winner of today's concluding night match between Roger Federer and Milos Raonic.

Victoria Azarenka did not always look convincing as she began the defence of her title last week, but the 23-year-old from Belarus needed only 56 minutes to beat Russia's Elena Vesnina 6-1, 6-1. In the quarter-finals Azarenka will meet Svetlana Kuznetsova, who beat Caroline Wozniacki 6-2, 2-6, 7-5.

Serena Williams the favourite for the title, beat Maria Kirilenko 6-2, 6-0 and will now face her 19-year-old fellow American, Sloane Stephens.

Suggested Topics
News
Susan Sarandon described David Bowie as
peopleSusan Sarandon reveals more on her David Bowie romance
Sport
Arsenal supporters gather for a recent ‘fan party’ in New Jersey
football
Sport
sportDidier Drogba returns to Chelsea on one-year deal
Arts and Entertainment
The Secret Cinema performance of Back to the Future has been cancelled again
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
Balmain's autumn/winter 2014 campaign, shot by Mario Sorrenti and featuring Binx Walton, Cara Delevingne, Jourdan Dunn, Ysaunny Brito, Issa Lish and Kayla Scott
fashionHow Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film
filmFifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage in US
News
BBC broadcaster and presenter Evan Davis, who will be taking over from Jeremy Paxman on Newsnight
peopleForget Paxman - what will Evan Davis be like on Newsnight?
Life and Style
fashionCustomer complained about the visibly protruding ribs
Voices
The new dawn heralded by George Osborne has yet to rise
voicesJames Moore: As the Tories rub their hands together, the average voter will be asking why they're not getting a piece of the action
Sport
Dejan Lovren celebrates scoring for Southampton although the goal was later credited to Adam Lallana
sport
News
newsComedy club forced to apologise as maggots eating a dead pigeon fall out of air-conditioning
Arts and Entertainment
Jo Brand says she's mellowed a lot
tvJo Brand says shows encourage people to laugh at the vulnerable
Life and Style
People may feel that they're procrastinating by watching TV in the evening
life
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Evan Davis: The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing to take over at Newsnight

The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing

What will Evan Davis be like on Newsnight?
Finding the names for America’s shame: What happens to the immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert?

Finding the names for America’s shame

The immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert
Inside a church for Born Again Christians: Speaking to God in a Manchester multiplex

Inside a church for Born Again Christians

As Britain's Anglican church struggles to establish its modern identity, one branch of Christianity is booming
Rihanna, Kim Kardashian and me: How Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Parisian couturier Pierre Balmain made his name dressing the mid-century jet set. Today, Olivier Rousteing – heir to the house Pierre built – is celebrating their 21st-century equivalents. The result? Nothing short of Balmania
Cancer, cardiac arrest, HIV and homelessness - and he's only 39

Incredible survival story of David Tovey

Tovey went from cooking for the Queen to rifling through bins for his supper. His is a startling story of endurance against the odds – and of a social safety net failing at every turn
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little