A first-ever clay victory over David Ferrer safely in the bag, Andy Murray wasted no time in calling on the support of the Roland Garros faithful ahead of Friday’s semi-final showdown with world number one Novak Djokovic.
The British number one booked his spot in his 16th Grand Slam semi-final with a 7-6, 6-2, 5-7, 6-1 victory over Ferrer on Wednesday evening.
It was his first victory in five attempts on clay against the Spaniard and extended his remarkable winning run on the surface this year to 15 matches.
But as impressive as the performance was on Court Suzanne Lenglen, Murray’s victory was somewhat overshadowed by the actions of Djokovic on Court Philippe Chartrier as the Serb became just the second man to beat Rafael Nadal at the French Open with a straight-sets win.
Like Murray, Djokovic is also unbeaten on clay this year although his hot streak extends all the way back to October with the Serb having not lost at any Masters or Grand Slam event he has entered since then.
And with that in mind, Murray admits he will need all the help possible if he is to reach his first-ever French Open final.
“It’s going to be an extremely tough match, I hope it’s a good one, I hope I can play high quality tennis. I’m going to need to do that if I want to have a chance,” he said.
“Novak has played extremely well to win against Rafa in straight sets. It’s going to be very difficult and I’m going to need as much support as I can get in that match.”
Murray could have been back in the locker room earlier on Thursday had he dispatched the match point he earned with the score at 5-4 in the third set.
A quick comfort break helped him compose his thoughts however as he raced into a 5-0 lead in the fourth set before Ferrer ensured Murray would have to serve out for the win– something he finally achieved on his third match point of the contest.
“I was frustrated at the end of the third set, the groundsman watered the court and I went to the bathroom to take a few minutes to try to relax and get my composure back and that helped,” he added.
“I was frustrated at the end of the third because I had the match point and it’s very difficult to play a full set more when you’ve just lost a match point.
“David fought extremely hard at the end of the third and made it very difficult.”
© Sportsbeat 2015