Madrid Open: Murray overcomes Copil, Thiem beats Donaldson

A victory over Marius Copil sends world number one Andy Murray into the Madrid Open third round.

Murray will face Borna Coric or the winner of the first-round match between Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Lucas Pouille in the last 16.   -  Getty Images

Andy Murray moved into the Madrid Open third round with a 6-4, 6-3 victory over resolute Romanian Marius Copil on Tuesday.

Despite a creditable performance from the wildcard, a break in each set from Murray proved enough to see him through.

Murray will face Borna Coric or the winner of the first-round match between Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Lucas Pouille in the last 16, as he seeks to reach the final for the third year in succession.

Copil acquitted himself well in what was only his fourth match against a top-10 opponent.

Despite being made to survive two break points in his opening service game, he kept pace with Murray until the Scot broke to take the opening set 6-4.

Copil seemed unfazed by that late disappointment and a wonderful backhand winner helped him win a service game to love as he pulled level at 1-1 in the second set.

The world number 104 was in danger of throwing away a 40-0 advantage when he allowed Murray to come back to deuce in the fourth game, but he clinched it with a powerful shot that wound up striking Manolo Santana - the man after whom the court is named - in the stands.

Four-time grand slam champion Santana brushed off the incident with good humour, but there was no smile on Copil's face when a series of unforced errors saw Murray go 4-2 in front.

A comfortable hold in the next sent Murray one away from victory, before the world number one made sure of the win on his own serve.

From inputs from agencies:

Murray's conqueror in Barcelona last month and potential quarter-final opponent Dominic Thiem eased past American Jared Donaldson 6-3, 6-4.

Ninth seed David Goffin became the first man into the third round with a routine 7-6 (7/3), 6-0 win over Germany's Florian Mayer.

Nicolas Almagro will face second seed Novak Djokovic as he begins life without long-term coach Marian Vajda on Wednesday after beating fellow Spaniard Tommy Robredo 6-3, 3-6, 6-1.

Rafael Nadal is also in action on Wednesday against Italy's Fabio Fognini.

WTA

In the women's Madrid Open defending champion Simona Halep came from 5-2 down in the final set to beat Roberta Vinci 6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (7/2) to reach the third round.

"I was close to losing the match, but I stayed strong, stayed focused and I didn't give up," said Halep.

"That makes this match much bigger for me. It means a lot."

Halep very nearly became the latest seed to fall in a decimated bottom half of the draw after early exits for Karolina Pliskova, Garbine Muguruza and Johanna Konta.

"I don't know who lost and who is still in the tournament," added Halep.

"I try to focus on myself a lot. As you saw today, I could have lost the match, so it doesn't matter who is winning, who is losing. Every match is tough."

Halep next faces Australian 16th seed Samantha Stosur.

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