Top seed Andy Murray marched into the final of the China Open on Saturday, beating David Ferrer 6-2, 6-3.
The Scotsman was the dominant force throughout the contest and is looking in tremendous form ahead of the competition’s climax. After this win, Murray will take on the winner of the clash between Grigor Dimitrov and third seed Milos Raonic.
Earlier in the day, Murray’s compatriot Johanna Konta booked her place in the women’s final, beating Madison Keys in three sets. The Briton will face the winner of the tie between third seed Agnieszka Radwanska and 16th seed Elina Svitolina.
Here are the results so far from the National Tennis Center in Beijing and a recap of the best of the action from Saturday.
Murray Shows his Class
Murray was jolted into action early in this one, as Ferrer pounced to break his opponent’s serve in the third game of the match. From that point, the world No. 2 took control of the opening stanza, immediately restoring parity and completing a run of five games in succession to take the opener 6-2.
Tennis TV provided us with the numbers behind what was an emphatic opening set in the end for the three-time major champion:
At the start of the second set, Ferrer was looking a little ragged and his opponent was on hand to capitalise, breaking in the fourth game to move 3-1 ahead. However, the Spaniard dug deep, getting stuck into Murray on return and getting the match back on serve.
While an immediate break back was a catalyst for a Murray recovery in the opening set, Ferrer couldn’t harness that momentum, with the top seed again finding it easy to dictate the points. Once the Scotsman broke again to go 4-2 up, the end was near for Ferrer.
As noted by the Live Tennis Twitter account, a consolidating hold of serve was crucial for Murray at this juncture:
That’s exactly what he did, eventually seeing the set out 6-3 and taking another step closer to his first-ever China Open triumph.
The first player through to the women’s final was Konta, as she battled hard to get over the line in her match with Keys.
After winning the first set in a tiebreak, the Briton looked ready to kick on and take this one. But her opponent rallied in the second stanza, producing some of her best tennis to level things up again.
The decider was fascinating, as both players lost their serve at the first chance, before settling into a rhythm that looked destined to end in a tiebreak. However, Konta applied the pressure on the Keys serve when she was just one game away, eventually taking the second of two match points.
As noted by Stuart Fraser of the Daily Mail, for Konta this win was a landmark one, as she secured a top 10 ranking spot with his victory:
For time being, the 11th seed will be thinking of nothing other than glory in Beijing, though. Both Svitolina and Radwanska would pose a major challenge in the final, and you suspect Konta will be watching that semi very closely indeed later in the day.
More to follow…
Source: Extra Juice