Scottish tennis sensation Andy Murray today became the first British player to be ranked in the top two of men’s tennis for the first time since the system was introduced as he defeated Joseph Wilfred Tsonga and progressed to the final at the Rogers Cup event in Montreal.
Murray overtakes five-time French Open champion Rafa Nadal as the Brit becomes the first player to break up the Federer and Nadal domination since the Swiss and Spanish duo began their drawn out rivalry over four years ago.
It will come as a timely boast for Murray as he recovers from the disappointment of a semi-final exit at Wimbledon and looks to avenge his loss last year to Roger Federer in the imminent US Open Championships.
Indeed the British No. 1 produced an efficient performance on the centre court as he refused to melt under the midday sun. He battled to a 6-4 7-6 (10-8) victory over his French opponent and sealed a date in the final with his bitter rival Juan Martin Del Potro.
Murray started the first set strongly, supreme when serving and aggressive when returning serve. He has only lost his serve on one occasion in the tournament so far and won his first three service games with moderate ease.
In the seventh game Murray broke the inconsistent seventh seed and went on to claim the first set despite losing a service game to provide the French no.1 with some small hope. Tsonga came to life in the second set mounting a comeback of sorts, with his form steadily improving.
Yet for every crunching stroke, there appeared an unforced error which became a regular pattern throughout the set. Murray was unable to capitalise on an unpredictable Tsonga with the match going to an eventual tie break.
At 6-5 Murray had to defend a set point as Tsonga began playing increasingly threatening tennis. The Scot then failed to convert a match point of his own as Tsonga prevented defeat with a lobbed volley.
It was all in vain as Murray went on to seal his spot in the final and claim the world number two spot, (when the ranking are updated on Monday) winning the tie break 10-8.
Murray becomes the first Brit to reach the final of the Rogers Cup since Roger Taylor in 1973. He spoke of his delight in securing the ranking after the match and spoke of his determination to one day claim the top spot in the men’s game.
“To get past Rafa is incredible, I mean both Roger and Rafa have shared the one and two rankings for the last five years, and they’re so consistent.”
“I didn’t know if I was ever going to get there. Just one more to go now”