Revitalised Murray in perfect mood to end semi-final woe

World number four Andy Murray insists he is in the perfect frame of mind to put an end to his Wimbledon semi-final woe.

Updated: June 30, 2011 04:03 IST
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London: World number four Andy Murray insists he is in the perfect frame of mind to put an end to his Wimbledon semi-final woe.

Murray's 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 victory against Spain's Feliciano Lopez in the last eight on Wednesday set up a showdown with defending champion Rafael Nadal in the last four on Friday.

The 24-year-old will be the underdog against the world number one as he has fallen at this hurdle for the last two years, losing to Andy Roddick in 2009 and Nadal 12 months ago.

But Murray, who is bidding to become the first British winner of the Wimbledon men's singles title since Fred Perry in 1936, has been revitalised since purging the bitter memory of January's Australian Open final defeat against Novak Djokovic.

The British star is adamant his impressive form over the last month - which included reaching the French Open semi-finals and winning at Queen's - has given him the confidence to cope with facing Nadal.

"I was not in a great position mentally after Australia, but I didn't feel like I was in a crisis. I just needed to make some changes and think about some things," he said.

"As soon as Monte Carlo came round, I'd spent some time training, I'd made some changes, got my head in the right place, and my tennis wasn't that sort of far behind. It didn't take that long to get it back."

"I feel good now. You don't know until you get out there but I feel good. I've played well so far and I feel comfortable."

"But I don't expect to feel comfortable in the next match. I know I'm going to have to go through moments where I'm struggling, where Rafa hits some unbelievable shots, and have to come back from behind sometimes. You have to be prepared for all that stuff."

Murray revealed he had suffered a hip injury during his win over Lopez, but he doesn't expect that to bother him against Nadal.

"It's little bit sore at the top of my hip. It's just sort of a change of direction thing," he said.

"It was a little bit sore after that, but I was still moving okay. I'll have a better idea of how it is in the morning."

By his own admission, Murray made an underwhelming start to the tournament, but he gave a grasscourt masterclass in his straight sets win over Richard Gasquet in the fourth round and Lopez was treated with equal disdain.

Lopez had defeated three-times finalist Roddick in the third round before recovering from two sets down to beat Lukasz Kubot in five sets in the last 16.

But Murray had won all four of their previous encounters and it wasn't long before he stamped his authority on the fifth.

Murray denied Lopez any chance to find his rhythm before converting his third break point to move 4-2 ahead and finished off the first set in dominant style.

He was back on top in the second when he broke in the fifth game and eased into a two-set lead with the minimum fuss.

By now it was clear that Lopez, who called for treatment on his knee early in the third set, had no answer to Murray's searing returns.

The knock-out blow arrived in the fifth game of the third set as Murray broke again before serving out the win.

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