Murray brothers survive the heat on day four, but with some concerns.
By Phil James
Andy and Jamie Murray both won their Thursday matches at the Australian Open but Jamie was left suffering from heat stroke after his victory.
Jamie’s first round men’s doubles match with Australian partner John Peers was scheduled to open proceedings on court five meaning they would play in the midday heat.
The 15th seeds battled for an hour and 50 minutes to a 7-6(4) 7-6(6) win over Australians Matt Reid and Luke Saville, but then started to suffer the effects of heat stroke after coming off court.
Though feeling ill and suffering from cramp, Jamie should recover to play in his second round match against Eric Butorac and Raven Klassen.
The American/South African pairing beat Australian legends Pat Rafter and Lleyton Hewitt in round one and are familiar faces to Murray and Peers.
Jamie played with Butorac in 2007 during one of the most successful periods of his career and the teams have been drawn against one another twice already this season.
Murray and Peers won the first encounter, the first round of the Brisbane International 6-3, 6-4.
A week later in Auckland Butorac/Klassen were denied a rematch when given a walk over for their quarter-final tie.
Given their current form, Murray and Peers will be the favourites to advance to round three though it will be a touch match and a lot will depend on how well Jamie recovers.
Andy spent time with his ailing brother before his own match against Vincent Millot, which thankfully was scheduled for the night session.
The younger Murray brother looked in complete control early on, winning the first two sets, both 6-2.
However the Frenchman suddenly found another gear in the third set, building some momentum to break Murray twice to lead 5-1.
The comeback was not to be for Millot though, as from 2-5* down the world number four won 23 consecutive points to storm back to take the third set 7-5 and with it the match.
Finishing only just before midnight, the Scot will have been extremely pleased to keep the match to just three sets, and little over two hours.
Next up for Murray is a third round tie against 26th seed Feliciano Lopez of Spain, a long time friend of Murray’s and object of desire of Andy’s mum who calls him ‘Deliciano Lopez.’
Maybe it’s that thought that drives Andy in his contests with Lopez, as he leads the Spaniard 7-0 on their head to head.
It would be a significant upset if that figure was not 8-0 by the start of next week.
Jonny Marray did not start his doubles campaign today as his match with Paul Hanley against the top-seeded Bryan brothers was cancelled.
Marray is the only Brit on the schedule tomorrow with that tough first round tie now scheduled for the Hisense Arean night session.