ATP Sony Open Tennis: Britain's Andy Murray cruises past Feliciano Lopez in Miami
Last Updated: 23/03/14 10:12pm
Andy Murray: Through to fourth round of the Sony Open Tennis in Miami
Andy Murray progressed to the last 16 of the Sony Open Tennis in Miami after clinching a comfortable 6-4 6-1 victory over Feliciano Lopez.
Apart from one minor blip at the start of the match, when he dropped serve straight after he had gained a break himself, the British No 1 was firmly in control against his Spanish opponent.
The defending champion needed just an hour and 13 minutes to see off a lacklustre Lopez, who has now lost all nine ATP matches he has played against Murray.
Murray began his 2014 campaign with a number of laboured displays after last year's back surgery but now looks to be improving ahead of a fourth-round clash with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
"It's not always that easy to feel comfortable against him because there is not loads of rhythm with the way he plays," Murray said.
"But I moved well, returned well. It was obviously a more comfortable scoreline than the other day (against Matthew Ebden).
"I don't know how hot it was, but when we came over at like 9:30am it was already 80 Fahrenheit and it was extremely humid. They are not easy conditions."
Sixth seed Murray made the ideal start with a break of serve to love in the opening game of the match, but there was a moment of concern in the next game when he grabbed his lower back in pain after dumping a forehand into the net.
He went on to lose that game after saving two break points, but did not appear to have any lasting physical damage and soon broke Lopez again for a 3-2 lead.
Murray lost just one point in each of his next three service games to see out the set and again broke Lopez at the start of the second.
Lopez looked to be suffering from back problems of his own and never threatened to make a match of it, losing his serve twice more as Murray sealed victory with a backhand return winner down the line.
Tsonga came back from the brink to reach the fourth round after battling past Marcos Baghdatis. The Frenchman was 5-1 down in the second set tie-break having lost the first set but still emerged with a 4-6 7-6 (8-6) 7-5 win.