Andy Murray eased through to his ninth successive grand slam quarter-final with a straightforward victory over fatigued Frenchman Gilles Simon at the Australian Open this morning.
Simon was taken to five gruelling sets by compatriot Gael Monfils in the previous round in a match which drifted into the early hours of Sunday morning and, having battled gamely, tired as the contest went on.
Murray still had to put him away but managed with ease to advance 6-3 6-1 6-3 in one hour and 35 minutes and improve his head-to-head record with the 28-year-old to 10 wins from 11 meetings.
“No one knew what to expect (from Simon) but I just had to focus on my side of the court,” said Murray, who will meet another Frenchman, Jeremy Chardy, in the last eight.
“He’s one of the best movers on the tour but he was struggling today. That’s what grand slam tennis is all about it’s tough.”
It was hard to gauge the performance given his opponent’s limitations but Murray will be pleased to have made it this far without overly exerting himself.
The match was in stark contrast to title rival Novak Djokovic’s five-hour struggle against Stanislas Wawrinka last night and the world number three will be hoping his relatively easy route through the bottom half of the draw will prove an advantage in the challenges which lie ahead.