Frenchman looks to avenge 2008 defeat

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The Independent Online

Richard Gasquet has good memories of his fourth-round meeting with Andy Murray here in 2008, even if he let victory slip from his grasp.

"I played very well," the Frenchman said as he recalled the four-hour match, which Murray won from two sets down. "I remember the crowd were very impressive. We had always been told: 'The English are quiet, Wimbledon is quiet.' But it was incredible. A lot of people were cheering for him.

"I remember that in the third, fourth and fifth sets it was very difficult for me to play, because there was a lot of noise. I could have finished it in three sets. I was 5-4 up with a break, but he fought a lot and I couldn't finish off the match."

Gasquet said he had always played well against Murray, even though he also squandered a two-set lead against the Scot at last year's French Open. "I hope not to win the first two sets this time," he smiled.

Did Gasquet think Murray had improved since their meeting here in 2008? "He's better for sure, because when I played him he was maybe No 12 or 13 in the world. Now he's No 4. It was a good match for him. After that he won the Cincinnati Masters one month later and reached the final of the US Open. He's much better now than when I played him three years ago.

"He's playing faster than before. Before he played a little bit slow and now he's playing very fast. He's aggressive. He's powerful. He has a big serve, a big forehand. He's running everywhere. He's also a very clever player. He knows how to win the points. He's one of the best players in the world for sure. He can win a Grand Slam soon."

Gasquet has not lost a set in his first three rounds here, beating Santiago Giraldo, Igor Kunitsyn and Simone Bolelli. "I'm feeling good and playing well," he said. "I'm improving my level every week. I played well at Roland Garros. This is a good match for me. It's good for me to get through to the second week and I will try to go further."