By Mario Sarmento
After conceding the first set of his second-round match against upstart Matthew Ebden of Australia, defending champion Andy Murray regained his winning form, taking 12 of the last 13 games in the match for a 3-6, 6-0, 6-1 victory in the Sony Open Tennis tournament on Stadium Court Friday.
Murray regained control in the second set with his powerful forehand, hitting 28 total winners for the match. The sixth-seeded Brit continues his quest for a second straight Sony Open title against Spain’s Feliciano Lopez in the third round. “I tried to get a little more aggressive,” Murray said. “I tried to convert my chances, and I was able to do that.”
On the women’s side, Venus Williams showed glimpses of the form that made her a three-time Sony Open Tennis tournament champion with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Anna Schmiedlova. Williams controlled play behind an impressive first serve, as she won 69 percent of the points on that first serve. “She’s very competitive,” Williams said after the improving her all-time record in Key Biscayne to 53-10 in 16 appearances. “The first match is always good to get a feel of the ball. It’s windy, it’s tough.” The 29th-seeded Williams will face Casey Dellacqua, a 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 winner over Jana Cepelova earlier in the day, in the third round.
In men’s second round action Saturday night, No. 11 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga swept Adrian Mannarino 6-2, 6-4; No. 15 Grigor Dimitrov outlasted Albert Montanes 6-1, 5-7 (5), 6-3; Andreas Seppi held off Radek Stepanek 7-6 (8), 4-6, 6-4; No. 20 Kei Nishikori beat Marinko Matosevic 6-4, 6-1; Marcos Baghdatis rallied again to beat Philipp Kohlschreiber 3-6, 7-6 (1), 7-6 (5); Thiemo De Bakker topped Fernando Verdasco 7-6 (4), 6-7 (3), 6-2; Feliciano Lopez swept Jiri Vesely 6-2, 7-6 (3); and Julien Benneteau beat Ernests Gulbis 6-4, 4-6, 7-5.
In the women’s second round, third seed Agnieszka Radwanska swept Romina Oprandi 6-0, 6-4; No. 11 Caroline Wozniacki outlasted Monica Puig 6-1, 1-6, 6-3; No. 17 Sloane Stephens beat Zarina Diyas 7-5, 6-3; Carla Suarez Navarro topped Chanelle Scheepers 6-4, 6-1.
In men’s doubles, Americans Ryan Harrison and Jack Sock beat fellow U.S. team Delton Baughman and Martin Redlicki 7-5, 6-4.
In women’s doubles, Janette Husarov and Iveta Melzer defeated Kirsten Flipkens and Ana Ivanovic 7-5, 6-4; Kveta Peschke and Katarina Srebotnik beat Svetlana Kuznetsova and Sam Stosur 6-2, 3-6 (10-4); Soriana Cirstea and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova took out Alicja Rosolska and Silvia Soler-Espinosa 6-2, 3-6 (10-5).