Wimbledon 2015: Calm Andy Murray kills all the tension with controlled display to see off Vasek Pospisil

This is the mature Murray. He is 28, married, a two-time Grand Slam champion with the Wimbledon monkey off his back

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The Independent Online

On Monday evening, late in the tense five-set doubles match against defending champions Vasek Pospisil and Jack Sock, Jamie Murray hit a simple volley into the net. He looked towards where mother Judy sat, grinned and made a hand signal that seemed to say: “Oops, I let you down there mum, never mind.”

Murray and his partner John Peers went on to win, and are in the semi-final again, so the relaxed approach worked. Nevertheless, the thought occurred that his younger brother would not have reacted so equably.

Indeed, when Andy Murray found himself wrong-footed in his singles quarter-final against Pospisil, as he sought to break at 4-4 in  the second set, he grimaced and angrily slapped his racket in his hand.

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Judy Murray, right, and Andy’s wife Kim watch Murray’s victory (Reuters)

But that was it. He focused again, broke the Canadian’s next service game, then closed out to take a two-set lead. Even a double-fault in his clinching service game did not disturb Murray’s equilibrium.

This is the mature Murray. He is 28, married, a two-time Grand Slam champion with the Wimbledon monkey off his back. The ranting at himself, the agonised shouts towards his box, the black moods and glowering looks have all gone. In their place is a supremely talented, highly-focused professional going to work.

There are moments when the mask slips and the old Andy resurfaces, as when he missed a chance to break at 3-3 in the third, but they are fleeting. Between them Ivan Lendl, Amélie Mauresmo, wife Kim and the passing of time have eased the anxieties.

 

There is a downside. As the stir created by Nick Kyrgios underlined, characters are relatively rare in modern tennis. Calm Murray is less interesting than Moody Murray. By way of compensation much of his tennis is sublime to watch but paradoxically this brilliance also diminishes the drama.

Since 2011 he has reached the quarter-finals in all 18 Grand Slam events he has entered and the only players outside the world’s top six to beat him are Stan Wawrinka (then ranked 10) in New York in 2013 and Grigor Dimitrov (then ranked 13) at Wimbledon last year.

Pospisil is not in their class and with little doubt about the result the Centre Court crowd were largely quiet, though the occasional rally brought them to their feet. It will be different on Friday when Murray faces Roger Federer. Finally there will be tension, such a vital ingredient of top-level sport, as well as excellence.

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