Nikolay Davydenk unconvinced over Andy Murray credentials

 

Andy Murray could not have been more impressive in beating Nikolay Davydenko in the first round of Wimbledon yesterday, but the Russian still believes his conqueror does not have what it takes to win a grand slam.

Murray went into the match with questions about his form hanging over his head and having had to defend himself against accusations that he exaggerated his recent back injury.

Davydenko stoked the flames with his own comments about Murray's on-court demeanour, adding the Scot was not good enough to win one of the sport's four major titles.

Murray was utterly dominant, racing to a 6-1 6-1 6-4 victory on Centre Court, but Davydenko was unmoved.

Asked if he still believed Murray would not be able to win a slam, Davydenko replied simply: "Yes."

The Russian was also grudging in his appreciation of Murray's performance, saying: "I didn't play against him for a long time so I don't know if it was his best. It would be the best tennis if he beat me 6-0 6-0 6-0, but he didn't do that."

Murray looked on the money from the first shot, reeling off nine straight games after Davydenko had held serve at the start of the match and astonishingly he did not make a single unforced error in the first two sets.

Everything in the Murray game was working well, but particularly his backhand slice and forehand, with which he powered winner after winner past Davydenko.

The 31-year-old said: "He played fast, he served well, he pushed me back on the return, he made less mistakes. It's always what he does. And I started to make mistakes from the baseline, I felt like I had no confidence.

"In the third set I relaxed a little bit and I tried to get a bit more control from the baseline but it was tough. I don't like so much to play on grass."

Davydenko has slipped to 47th in the world rankings from a high of number three and has never really recovered from a broken wrist he suffered in 2010, which came only months after he won the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals the first time it was held in London.

Yesterday's match did enable him to reach a personal milestone, though.

Davydenko said: "For me it was perfect. It was my first time on Centre Court. In every other grand slam I played on the biggest court already many times. Here it was tough, I never had good results."

Murray was happy to silence his critics, at least for now, but mostly he was just pleased to get through the match after having to wait two weeks since his second-round loss at Queen's Club for a competitive encounter.

He said: "I just wanted to go out there, play well, keep my focus, and not worry about the other stuff. I think I did a good job of that. It's time to let the tennis do the talking."

PA

BUY WIMBLEDON TICKETS

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

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

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen
RuPaul interview: The drag star on being inspired by Bowie, never fitting in, and saying the first thing that comes into your head

RuPaul interview

The drag star on being inspired by Bowie, never fitting in, and saying the first thing that comes into your head
Secrets of comedy couples: What's it like when both you and your partner are stand-ups?

Secrets of comedy couples

What's it like when both you and your partner are stand-ups?
Satya Nadella: As Windows 10 is launched can he return Microsoft to its former glory?

Satya Nadella: The man to clean up for Windows?

While Microsoft's founders spend their billions, the once-invincible tech company's new boss is trying to save it
The best swimwear for men: From trunks to shorts, make a splash this summer

The best swimwear for men

From trunks to shorts, make a splash this summer
Mark Hix recipes: Our chef tries his hand at a spot of summer foraging

Mark Hix goes summer foraging

 A dinner party doesn't have to mean a trip to the supermarket
Ashes 2015: With an audacious flourish, home hero Ian Bell ends all debate

With an audacious flourish, the home hero ends all debate

Ian Bell advances to Trent Bridge next week almost as undroppable as Alastair Cook and Joe Root, a cornerstone of England's new thinking, says Kevin Garside
Aaron Ramsey interview: Wales midfielder determined to be centre of attention for Arsenal this season

Aaron Ramsey interview

Wales midfielder determined to be centre of attention for Arsenal this season
Community Shield: Arsene Wenger needs to strike first blow in rivalry with Jose Mourinho

Community Shield gives Wenger chance to strike first blow in rivalry with Mourinho

As long as the Arsenal manager's run of games without a win over his Chelsea counterpart continues it will continue to dominate the narrative around the two men
The unlikely rise of AFC Bournemouth - and what it says about English life

Unlikely rise of AFC Bournemouth

Bournemouth’s elevation to football’s top tier is one of the most improbable of recent times. But it’s illustrative of deeper and wider changes in English life
A Very British Coup, part two: New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel

A Very British Coup, part two

New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel
Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms