Murray uses friendly fire to warm up for Wawrinka

Briton faces first big test at US Open with help from an old acquaintance and determination to succeed

He may be without a permanent coach following his split with Miles Maclagan, but Andy Murray is not exactly short of support here at the US Open. The 23-year-old Scot's entourage all but filled his player box during his straight-sets victory over Dustin Brown on Friday night.

After a place in the third round had been secured, Team Murray's work was far from done. Judy Murray went off to watch her son's next opponent – he will meet Stanislas Wawrinka, following the world No 27's victory over Juan Ignacio Chela – while Alex Corretja and Daniel Vallverdu joined Murray on the practice court. The 85-minute victory over Brown featured so few rallies that Murray just wanted to hit some more balls.

Corretja has been a part-time member of the world No 4's coaching team for the last two years – it was a disagreement over his role that led to Murray parting company with Maclagan – while Vallverdu has been a friend since their teenage days together at the Sanchez-Casal academy in Barcelona.

The Venezuelan, who has played doubles with Murray in the past, has been an important figure in his camp this summer. He was a hitting partner last month at the Masters Series tournaments in Toronto and Cincinnati and he has been having his say on tactics, although he is not expected to become a permanent member of the Scot's coaching team.

"He's my best friend," Murray said. "He's known me since I was 15. We used to play doubles together. He knows my game well. He watches all my matches on the TV. He knows me well as a person. It's nice to have someone like that around. It's nice to have friends and family around. I wouldn't say he is coaching me. He's just here to help out. I've hit with him every single day since I've been here. He's a very good player."

Vallverdu also went to have a look at Wawrinka. "He'll try to get some tactics, some tips," Murray said. "He knows tennis. He was the No 1 player at the University of Miami. He was No 3 in college tennis. He played Davis Cup for Venezuela. He was a good junior player too."

Murray said he found it hard to assess his form on the basis of his match against Brown, but had been pleased with the way he had beaten Lukas Lacko in the opening round. Having not played his first match until Wednesday, he was happy to have won quickly on both occasions. "It's a good start but the matches get tougher from now," he said.

Wawrinka, who works with Roger Federer's former coach, Peter Lundgren, has won three of his eight matches against Murray, though two of those victories have been on his favourite surface, clay.

Their last two meetings have been in the fourth round of Grand Slam events and Murray has won on both occasions. The Scot triumphed in straight sets on his way to the final here two years ago but he was taken to five sets before winning last year at Wimbledon, in the first match to be played under the Centre Court roof.

"It was my best match for sure," the 25-year-old Wawrinka said, after his 7-5 6-3 6-4 victory over Chela. "It was a great experience – the first night session at Wimbledon with the roof on. It was really a great match even if I lost."

How would he go about trying to beat Murray now? "I need to stay very aggressive with my game and especially the serve. He's very good in defence, but I think I need to take the ball early and come into the net.

"He has a great serve, but he is playing far away from the baseline and I think that's where I need to go, to keep him far away from the baseline."

Murray described Wawrinka as "a very, very difficult player" and added: "He's had a lot of close matches with top players before so I'm going to have to play very well to win that one."

What did Murray see as Wawrinka's main attributes?

"He does everything well," he said. "He serves well. He's got a solid return. He can obviously play good doubles. He's won the Olympics with Roger [Federer], so he can volley well. He plays good. He doesn't have one massive weakness so I'm just going to have to play a little bit better than him. I'm going to have to serve well, go for my shots."

Murray is determined to continue playing the more attacking game that served him so well last month in Toronto, where he won his first title for nine months. "I need to play my game," he said. "I need to play aggressive when I get the chance. I've been serving well the first couple of matches and it's a lot easier to play aggressive when you're serving well."

Reaching the last 32 here extends Murray's excellent record at the Grand Slam tournaments. He has reached the third round or better of the last 11 tournaments, dating back to his first-round defeat at the Australian Open in 2008, and he arrived here as the only player other than Federer to have reached the fourth round of the last nine Grand Slams.

Should he beat Wawrinka, Murray will next play either Sam Querrey, who beat him in the Las Vegas final at the start of the US hard-court season, or Marcel Granollers.

peoplePaper attempts to defend itself
voicesWe desperately need men to be feminists too
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
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.

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits