Murray back to winning ways

BRITISH No1 Andy Murray returned to winning ways for the first time since the Australian Open semi-final but admits he’ll never be able to please everyone.

The Scot has endured a wretched run since his mauling at the hands of Novak Djokovic in Melbourne, losing four successive matches and recently parted company with his consultant of three years Alex Correjta.

Murray began his clay court campaign with a commanding 6-1, 6-4 win over Czech Radek Stepanek in the second round of the Monte Carlo Masters, but admitted his recent malaise had been playing on his mind. He said: “Not winning was a little bit tough at the start and got easier towards the end. I made some changes to my coaching set-up which played on my mind for a few weeks, but I believe in myself, train hard and practice hard.

“People are going to criticise me all the time, it’s something I’ve got to deal with. I’m the one on the court and challenging for the biggest events and I’m happy, a lot happier than I was at this stage last year.”

Murray secured the first set after a third-game break had put him in control. The three-time Grand Slam finalist made only one unforced error during the first seven games.

The second set appeared to be going the way of the first, after Murray registered his fourth break of the match to take a 4-1 lead.

However, Stepanek capitalised on a period of Murray uncertainty to win the next three games and level the set.

Murray rallied though and held serve before breaking his opponent again to take the set and the match.

The Scot will now face French 16th seed Gilles Simon in the third round today.