Title-chasing Andy Murray has vowed to go on the offensive in a bid dispatch Tomas Berdych and reach a third Wimbledon final in tomorrow’s last-four tussle on Centre Court.
After reaching his first Wimbledon semi-final since 2010 by defeating France’s Lucas Pouille on Wednesday, Berdych observed that Murray had assumed a more combative mindset on court since the early stages of his career.
While today’s meeting will be the duo’s first on grass, Murray’s holds an 8-6 head-to-head record against the Czech, including four successive victories, and the Scot insists aggression will again be the key.
“I’ve played well against him the last couple of years,” said Murray. “It’s nice when the players I’m playing against say I’m playing more aggressive because everyone’s only said I’ve played aggressive when Ivan [Lendl] has been coaching me.
“The last few years I have been playing more aggressive tennis, playing with a little bit more variety, for sure. That’s worked well against him. When in the past, I hadn’t such good results against him, the last couple of years it’s been good.”
A sub-plot to Murray’s seventh semi-final appearance can be found in the stands and not just Lendl, who declined the opportunity to work with 10th seed Berdych when he left his role with the two-time grand slam winner in 2014.
Murray was forced to defend his then-fiancee, now wife, Kim Sears over an apparent expletive-laden rant during a tense first set when he and Berdych met in the semi-finals at the 2015 Australian Open.
Berdych was keen to play down the flash point when asked about his relationship with Murray. He said: “That’s it. It happened. that’s in the past. Otherwise, absolutely fine.”