Murray makes it to the final in Shanghai

Andy Murray breezed into the final of the Shanghai Masters with a crushing 6-4 6-1 victory over Juan Monaco.

Despite arriving in Shanghai at less than 100% fitness on account of illness, the Scot has looked in supreme form all week and Monaco could not counter Murray's brilliance from the back of the court. Two breaks of serve helped Murray secure the opening set and that broke Monaco's spirit as the world No. 4 raced through the second set, demonstrating his full array of shots, to wrap up victory in less than 90 minutes.

Murray has been superb on serve all week and made an early signal of intent with a love service hold.

Monaco does not possess a huge weapon and attempted to change things up by heading to the net, but his shortcomings were highlighted when he threw a backhand volley into the net. The Argentine held his first service game, but he was put under severe pressure in the fourth game when Murray arrowed a running cross court forehand past his outstretched racket and it helped the Scot break.

Murray has a habit of taking his foot off the gas for no reason and he handed the break back to Monaco when serving for the set at 5-3 - with the effort summed up by a double fault at break-point down.

With the chance to cement his break, Monaco inexplicably gave the break straight back to the Scot. Murray did it the hard way as he won the second point of the game with a broken string. He threw up huge defensive lobs and Monaco chucked the third into the tramlines. Losing that point seemed to rattle Monaco as errors crept in and a tame backhand hit the net to hand the world No. 4 the set.

Monaco demonstrated superb fighting spirit to beat Jurgen Melzer in the quarter finals, but that near three-hour epic may well have left a mark as he had nothing to give in the second set.

Murray raced into a three-love lead and although Monaco held serve to stop the rot, he failed to take an opening in the fifth game. He twice had presentable opportunities to get ahead in the game, but hit the net and then threw a backhand long and he wilted in the face of the incessant pressure from Murray who sealed the win with an ace.

"I started very well and ended very well, the middle I started missing a few balls and did not make many first serves so was on the back foot in a lot of the rallies," Murray said. "I just had to scrape through. That one point where I broke the string and put up three lobs really changed things. I had the momentum from there and so far it has been really good."


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