Murray too good for Goffin in Rome


Andy Murray took a step closer to reaching the ATP Internazionali d'Italia final for the first time by seeing off David Goffin 6-1 7-5 in Friday's last-eight contest.

Goffin headed into the quarter-final having shocked Tomas Berdych in a 6-0 6-0 whitewash in Rome on Thursday, but Murray proved too big of a challenge in the Eternal City.

The second seed, who also beat Goffin on clay in Great Britain's Davis Cup final victory over Belgium last year, followed a similar pattern to his win over Jeremy Chardy by racing through the first set and toughing it out in the second.

There were seven breaks of serve in total in the second, but Murray was always a class above and the Briton deservedly earned a last-four showdown with Lucas Pouille.

Goffin came out firing and some aggressive groundstrokes helped break Murray in the first game.

However, that only appeared to rile Murray who immediately levelled thanks to a couple of stunning backhands and he mixed his game up with a deft drop-shot to make it a double-break 4-1 lead.

Murray won 12 straight points to take complete control and the errors crept into Goffin's game, including a backhand into the net that gifted Murray a 5-1 lead before he duly served out the opener. 

The second set was a more back-and-forth affair, with a sloppy Murray handing Goffin a 3-1 lead only to reel off three straight games to have a break lead at 4-3.

Once again Goffin hit back to level, but the Belgian's error count was rising and when he was broken for a sixth time in the match with a poorly executed drop-shot, Murray had the chance to serve for the match.

There was no end to the series of breaks, though, as Goffin tied it up again, but the Belgian's troubles on serve continued and Murray broke again in a lengthy game 11 to earn a second opportunity to serve it out.

And this time Murray got the job done, a long return from Goffin ending his resistance.