Skip to main content

Murray begins Barcelona bid with easy win

April 25, 2012 -- Updated 1148 GMT (1948 HKT)
Andy Murray recorded only his second win in four visits to the Barcelona Open.
Andy Murray recorded only his second win in four visits to the Barcelona Open.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Andy Murray begins Barcelona Open campaign with 6-3, 6-2 win over Sergiy Stakhovsky
  • Murray is seeded second in Barcelona behind defending champion Rafael Nadal
  • Teenager Bernard Tomic beats Ernests Gulbis for his second clay-court win of the season
  • U.S. Open champion Sam Stosur wins opening match in strong WTA field in Stuttgart

(CNN) -- World No. 4 Andy Murray rebounded from his quarterfinal loss in Monte Carlo with a comfortable win in the opening round of the Barcelona Open on Tuesday.

Murray, who lost to Tomas Berdych last week, beat Sergiy Stakhovsky of Ukraine 6-3 6-2 on the red clay for his 20th win of the season.

"I thought I was hitting the ball well and I played better as the match went on," Murray said.

The 24-year-old spent time training in Barcelona as a teenager, but has never had much luck at the tournament: Tuesday's win was only his second in four visits.

Murray is seeded second behind Rafael Nadal, who won his eighth straight Monte Carlo Masters title by beating world No. 1 Novak Djokovic on Sunday.

Defending champion Nadal will open his campaign for a seventh Barcelona title against fellow Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez on Wednesday.

Rafael Nadal answers iReporter questions

Spanish sixth seed Nicolas Almagro and ninth seed Fernando Verdasco, who won the 2010 title when Nadal did not play, also won in straight sets on Tuesday.

Teenager Bernard Tomic, the 15th seed, beat unpredictable Latvian Ernests Gulbis of Latvia 6-3 6-4 for his second clay-court win of the season.

"I think I played well on my service games," the 19-year-old Australian told the ATP website. "I am starting to move better on the clay and it is the best I've played so far."

He faces a tough test against Spain's Albert Montanes in the next round.

At the WTA Tour tournament in Stuttgart, U.S. Open champion Sam Stosur took less than an hour to beat Peng Shuai of China 6-2 6-2. The Australian said she had been helped by playing on clay in Stuttgart over the weekend when she helped Australia beat Germany in the Fed Cup.

"It was handy to have been here a week already, whereas a lot of the other girls were only arriving from Fed Cup on Monday night," Stosur said. "Sometimes the best preparations don't equate to the best performance, but you aren't going to complain about playing Fed Cup in the same place as your next event."

Stosur is competing in a strong field in Stuttgart that also includes the other three reigning grand slam champions -- Victoria Azarenka, Petra Kvitova and Li Na -- as well as world No. 2 Maria Sharapova, last year's runner-up Caroline Wozniacki and Polish No. 4 Agnieszka Radwanska.

French seventh seed Marion Bartoli was in action on Tuesday and beat Czech Iveta Benesova 6-3 6-2, while defending champion Julia Gorges beat Russian Fed Cup player Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 5-7 6-3 6-4 and her fellow German Andrea Petkovic made a winning return after three months out with a back injury.

.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
June 30, 2014 -- Updated 1135 GMT (1935 HKT)
When Agnieszka Radwanska refused to look her opponent in the eye after losing at Wimbledon, it raised more than eyebrows.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 0114 GMT (0914 HKT)
It's 10 years since a teenage Maria Sharapova became the darling of Wimbledon's hallowed Center Court, launching herself as a star.
Rafael Nadal is still the "King of Clay" -- but his crown has slipped a bit, says CNN's Will Edmonds.
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 0746 GMT (1546 HKT)
He's regularly voted France's favorite famous person, but many of the nation's youth have "no idea" about his glorious sporting past
May 5, 2014 -- Updated 2359 GMT (0759 HKT)
British tennis player Elena Baltacha won 11 ITF Pro Circuit titles during her 16-year playing career.
The Ukrainian-born, British tennis star loses fight against liver cancer, just a few weeks after revealing that she was battling the disease.
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 1555 GMT (2355 HKT)
Five-time grand slam champion Martina Hingis has followed her mom into a coaching role, setting up a new tennis academy in Barcelona, Spain.
April 16, 2014 -- Updated 1238 GMT (2038 HKT)
Suisse's Belinda Bencic returns the ball to France's Alize Cornet during the second match of the Fed Cup first round tennis tie France vs Switzerland on February 8, 2014 at the Pierre de Coubertin stadium in Paris. AFP PHOTO / KENZO TRIBOUILLARD (Photo credit should read KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP/Getty Images)
It's no easy matter becoming a world class tennis player. It's even harder when everyone (really -- everyone) is calling you the "new Martina Hingis."
April 2, 2014 -- Updated 1420 GMT (2220 HKT)
At the 2009 Australian Open, French men's tennis was the talk of the town.
April 15, 2014 -- Updated 1800 GMT (0200 HKT)
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - APRIL 14: Rafael Nadal of Spain sails a boat during day two of the ATP Monte Carlo Rolex Masters Tennis at Monte-Carlo Sporting Club on April 14, 2014 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Rafael Nadal may be most at home on a clay tennis court, but he has always found comfort on the sea.
March 21, 2014 -- Updated 1107 GMT (1907 HKT)
Tennis star Venus Williams reveals how she is beating the autoimmune disease that derailed her career.
March 5, 2014 -- Updated 1014 GMT (1814 HKT)
After two decades dedicated to the game, Amelie Mauresmo wants a second life -- one away from tennis.
Rafael Nadal of Spain wipes his face after losing his men's final match against Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland during day 14 of the 2014 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 26, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia.
Almost five years to the day after reducing Roger Federer to tears at the Australian Open, Rafael Nadal shed a few in his own loser's speech.
ADVERTISEMENT