Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Murray Is Driven on by Nadal

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Murray Is Driven on by Nadal

Article excerpt

Byline: LEO SPALL

ANDREW MURRAY may have only just won his first senior tennis tour match, but the 18-yearold Scot is already talking about emulating French Open winner Rafael Nadal.

His convincing 6-1, 6-2 firstround win at Queen's yesterday against Spain's Santiago Ventura posted a landmark on an already promising CV.

Murray announced his potential last September when he won the junior US Open title, and a key Davis Cup contribution in Britain's win against Israel earlier this year enhanced his reputation.

But with Britain desperately searching for a star to replace Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski as they head towards their twilight years, Murray is confident he can handle the expectation.

He has been handed a wildcard entry for Wimbledon and is happy to compare his strengths against the phenomenal Nadal, even though the Spaniard has set the standard for teenagers.

Nadal became the youngest Grand Slam champion in 16 years when he beat Mariano Puerta at Roland Garros on Sunday while Murray had a good run at Roland Garros himself, reaching the semifinals of the Boys tournament.

The Briton, who entered the Stella Artois championships on a wildcard, believes that he has it within him to emulate Nadal.

He said: "It's going to be difficult to do what he has done, but I've got to aim for the top.

"One thing you have to look at is that Nadal, who's 19, is physically better than everybody else in the world. I've maybe got two or three years because my body has not developed like his. I've got to fill out and get stronger."

While he is playing in Britain, Murray wants to make the most of the local support. He said: "I am ready for the attention and looking forward to it. To play at home is good motivation.

Murray will get his next chance to use the motivating power of the home crowds when he faces bigserving American Taylor Dent in the second round at Queen's Club.

Ninth seed Dent today defeated Germany's Tomas Behrend 6-4 6-3 and will provide Murray with a tough test in the last 32. …

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