Formidable Murray too strong for Zverev in Perth

Image: OUE Singapore Slammers’ Andy Murray hits a return to Micromax Indian Aces’ Bernard Tomic during their match at the International Premier Tennis League (IPTL) in Dubai, December 16, 2015. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah

(Reuters) – Briton Andy Murray showed no signs of a thigh injury as he dispatched German teenager Alexander Zverev in the punishing Perth heat at the Hopman Cup on Friday.

The world number two had spoken of soreness in his right thigh during Wednesday’s loss to Australian Nick Kyrgios at the mixed team event but his movement was sharp as he picked apart Zverev 6-3 6-4.

Murray also teamed up to win a mixed doubles with Heather Watson, who beat Sabine Lisicki in straight sets, but it was not enough to clinch a place in the final as Australia Green, one of two teams from the host nation, beat France.

Four-times Australian Open runner-up Murray wore down his 83rd ranked opponent by keeping him on the move and targeted the German’s inconsistent forehand to secure an early break in each set.

Zverev, though, refused to balk and continued to try and push Murray. The young German pulled back a break in the eight game of the second set after an error-strewn game by the Scot but Murray recovered to seal on his next service game after a big serve down the middle.

Ever the perfectionist, Murray said he had more work to do before the Australian Open gets underway on Jan. 18 in Melbourne.

“I started missing a few balls and dropping a few short and he was able to dictate some of the points at the end so something I need to do a bit better,” the 28-year-old said in an courtside interview.

“I feel fine, it’s great to get matches in, nice to play during the day to get used to the hot weather. Hopefully it’s not that bad in Melbourne.”

Australia Green, featuring Nick Kyrgios and Daria Gavrilova, face Ukraine in the final.

(Writing by Patrick Johnston in Singapore; editing by Amlan Chakraborty and Ed Osmond)

Copyright 2015 Thomson Reuters. Click for Restrictions.

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