Wimbledon 2014 - Andy Murray comment: Every bit of the defending champion's game looked in good shape against Blaz Rola

Murray charged to an emphatic 6-1, 6-1, 6-0 triumph in the second round

There is a school of thought that suggests it is good to have a tough match in the early stages of a Grand Slam tournament because it steels you for the harder challenges ahead. However, you are more likely to hear that argument from a player who has just been through one of those matches – and is desperately trying to draw positives from it – than from someone who has been coasting through the early rounds.

MURRAY V ROLA - AS IT HAPPENED

In the immediate aftermath of his crushing second-round victory over Blaz Rola here today, Andy Murray was clearly in the latter camp. He recalled some of the tough matches he had at the recent French Open – in particular a marathon four-hour struggle against Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber in the third round – and wondered whether he might have fared better in his semi-final against Rafael Nadal if he had felt fresher.

When you have played as many matches as Murray has – only nine other active men can better his tally of 451 tour-level victories – you hardly need to be reminded what it is like to be pushed hard on the court. Nearly all the top players would agree that conserving energy is a bigger priority at this stage of a Grand Slam tournament.

While Rola never looked capable of providing Murray with any sort of test, much of that was down to the Scot’s excellence. Every bit of Murray’s game looked in good shape. On the very rare occasions when Rola made inroads into his service games, Murray almost invariably served his way out of difficulty.

If Murray is to continue to make progress he will have plenty of stiffer tests to face. The big-serving Kevin Anderson, the Queen’s champion Grigor Dimitrov, the ever-consistent David Ferrer and the top seed, Novak Djokovic, are all potential opponents if Murray is to maintain his push towards a third successive final here. The quicker he can get through his early rounds the better he will be placed to face such challenges.

Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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.

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence