HEAD racquet rebel Andy Murray established himself as a threat to return to third in the world after winning his second Asian title in as many weeks with a 3-6, 6-2, 6-0 victory over Rafael Nadal followed by a doubles triumph with his brother Jamie at the Japan Open in Tokyo. Murray, swinging this YouTek Radical Pro in one of the best days of his career, has made it his goal to overhaul Roger Federer and finish No. 3 by the end of the ATP season in a month. The Scot added the Tokyo title to his Bangkok triumph of a week ago as he handed Nadal a bagel in the final set. "For sure in the third set it was some of the best tennis I've played against him. I was very consistent, didn't make too many mistakes and kept a cool head in the important moments," said the winner of three of his last four tournaments.
Murray was also pleased to gain doubles honours together with his brother. "It's a bit extra special playing with your brother.”
In Beijing at the China Open, HEAD's Tomas Berdych ended his title draught lasting more than two and a half years beating fellow HEAD racquet rebel Marin Cilic of Croatia 3-6, 6-4, 6-1. Berdych said that breaking his trophy drought was a great feeling. "To win this title means really a lot to me because it's after 29 months. It was quite a long time, so I'm happy that I could break this up. I think I couldn't have a better place to win a title than here in Beijing.
Cilic, playing with his YouTek Radical MP, was denied his first title since February, 2010. "I'm feeling a little bit disappointed by the loss today. I was playing really great tennis from the beginning of the match."
Berdych moved up to seventh in the race for one of the last four spots open at the November ATP World Tour Finals in London. "I did a great move to have a good chance to qualify for London. Still, in these two weeks in Shanghai and Paris I really need to do well. This win gives me a lot of confidence for the rest of the season. I hope I can keep my level of game what I did and hopefully to win even more matches."
Andy Murray could be in the midst of a huge career breakthrough with his Asian domination. "Novak Djokovic set the bar pretty high with his year (ten titles) and his records so far, so I've got to try and keep up somehow," said Murray. "I've played well in the last few months in Cincinnati and then the US Open.”
"I need to carry on that form in Shanghai - this week, where Murray is defending the title - and I need to keep up the wins and hopefully I'll get to No. 3. It's not the ultimate goal, but it's the target I set for the last few tournaments this year.”