By Jaclyn Stacey
(January 15, 2013) MELBOURNE PARK, Australia – Olympic gold medalist and US Open champion Andy Murray won through to the second round of Australian Open 2013 following a clinical display of tennis in disposing of Dutchman Robin Haase in straight sets 6-3, 6-1, 6-3.
“I did a good job of that today” said Murray. “It’s always nice to get through the first round of any tournament, but especially here.”
Murray, one of five Grand Slam champions in the main draw, proved to be too good for Haase throughout the one hour and 37 minute encounter using his variety of shots to dominate play. Haase attempted to make a dent in Murray’s game by hitting the ball harder and coming in to the net more but it was to no avail, Murray showcasing just why he is ranked number three in the world.
Coming into the match the players were squared at one all in their head-to-head with their previous meeting coming at the 2011 US Open in which Murray fought from two sets down to overcome Haase in five.
Haase started the match well, easily holding his first service game before Murray put the foot down to break his opponent twice. He failed on his first attempt to serve for the first set and Haase was able to reclaim one of his breaks before Murray managed to seal the set on the second attempt 6-3.
Murray outclassed his opponent further in the second set, allowing Haase just one game before taking a two sets to love lead 6-3, 6-1.
He immediately broke Haase again to go ahead in the third set before taking the foot off the gas to comfortably win the match 6-3, 6-1, 6-3 and advance to a second round encounter against Portugal’s Joao Sousa who defeated Australian wildcard John-Patrick Smith in straight sets 6-4 6-1 6-4.
Murray was pleased with his performance following the match.
“Yeah, it was a good start. I mean, it was very different conditions to what it’s been the last four, five days. So the court was playing much different. Bouncing a lot higher. It’s much livelier.”
“Yeah, I thought I did a pretty good job from the start of dictating the points and not giving him too many freebies.”
In other day two men’s action 13th seed Milos Raonic needed four sets to topple Czech Jan Hajek 3-6 6-1 6-2 7-6 in just under two and a half hours. Raonic will play the winner of the match between British qualifier Jamie Baker and giant killer Lukas Rosol.
German 25th seed Florian Mayer triumphed in a five setter coming back from two sets down to defeat American Rhyne Williams 2-6 3-6 6-2 7-6(12) 6-1 and will play qualifier Ricardas Berankis in the second round who today defeated Ukrainian Sergiy Stakhovsky in a tight three setter 6-2 7-6(4) 7-5.
21st seed Andreas Seppi had an easy straight sets win over Argentinian Horacio Zeballos and will play Denis Istomin on Thursday after the Uzbekh overcame Dutchman Igor Sijsling in four sets 4-6 6-3 6-4 6-2.
German 17th seed Philipp Kohlschreiber won through to the second round disposing of Steve Darcis 6-2 6-3 6-4 and will play Israeli qualifier Amir Weintraub.
For updated scores, draws and results visit AustralianOpen.com
Jaclyn Stacey is a Melbourne based freelance journalist covering the Australian Open tournament as media for Tennis Panorama News. Follow her Australian Open updates on @TennisNewsTPN. Follow her personal twitter @JackattackAU.