Murray must up game to defeat Wawrinka in Paris

The first racket of the world Andy Murray turned the tide of the quarter-final match with kei nishikori and the Japanese revenge for the recent defeat at the US Open.

At the bottom of the draw, Dominic Thiem dismissed defending Open champion Novak Djokovic, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3, 6-0, to set up a semi with heavy title tip Rafael Nadal.

However, the other three semi-finalists are yet to drop a set, while Murray has lost three so far.

"He's won five matches and I'm hoping he can win one more tomorrow".

The last French player in the tournament, 28th-seeded Caroline Garcia, is facing No. 2 Karolina Pliskova on Court Philippe Chatrier.

"He's obviously played extremely well the last few years at the French, and he's confident". I have positive feelings and am playing well.

That took the set to a crucial, yet surprisingly one-sided, tie-break as the Scot waltzed to a 7-0 scoreline - enough to take him one set away from the semi-final in the process. Halep clinched the second set with a forehand victor and swept through the decider as Svitolina's spirit sagged, sealing victory with an ace. "Last year when we met [in the semi-final] he was playing very well and I had to play one of my best matches on clay to beat him".

Murray said: "It wasn't the best match". It was tricky out there. "Physically and mentally I feel ready". "I think my serve got a little bit bad today, missing too many first serves".

"Whereas in Madrid (where he lost his second match to Borna Coric), I didn't know which shots to play". I think he's struggling a little bit since the beginning of the year, but he's in the semifinal. It was very windy down on the court. There wasn't much rhythm out there. And practice also was not good. "It was windy, so the timing was hard, but once I was able to get into a rhythm and keep him away from the baseline, that made the difference", said Murray.

The chair umpire, Carlos Ramos, gave Murray a time violation in the first set and he dropped serve, descending thereafter into a rolling rant that lasted all the way to the fourth set.

He argued his case with Ramos to no avail but the Scot is never more unsafe than when he has a sense of grievance. And the way I lost the serve, I thought was a unusual time for it. It wasn't the best match. "From there I started to do a bit better". Penalised a loss of serve by the official, an angry Murray remonstrated with Ramos about the decision and later explained that he had simply missed a ball toss as he prepared to serve. You're allowed 20 seconds here.

"He loves a challenge", said Gilbert, who is now an ESPN analyst but worked with Murray for 18 months between 2006 and 2007, helping him break into the world's top 10. It was just today it was just unusual how it came about, because it was after the very first game of the match. And then my second service game I got the warning. I think I'm playing well.

"How the players are supposed to know that in their head when we're playing at one speed throughout the whole year, and then you show up at the slams, you're expected to speed up by 5 seconds".

"Even with a clock, it would still be judgment calls that the umpires would have to make". It's never going to be flawless so when it happens to you, it's frustrating.

Murray will take on former champion Stan Wawrinka in a remake of last year's semifinal, which Murray won.

  • Julie Sanders