Andy Murray got through a truly swelling experience against profoundly appraised Spanish teen Carlos Alcaraz to arrive at the last 32 at the BNP Paribas Masters in Indian Wells on Sunday.
Murray has tipped the gifted 18-year-old as a future world No 1 except for it was the veteran Scot who outlived his adversary 5-7 6-3 6-2 in more than three hours in the desert heat.
"He's obviously got so much potential, so much firepower and these conditions it's not easy to finish points off quickly, but he's able to because he has so much pace from the back of the court so I had to fight extremely hard, coming back from a set down," Murray said in his on-court interview.
"I felt like in the second set he played maybe better. First set I felt like I had more of the opportunities but didn't get it so yeah, happy with the way I fought. He's a top-drawer young player."
Alcaraz, who burst onto the scene by arriving at the quarter-finals of the current year's US Open, struggled back from the skirt of a twofold separate.
There looked like being a further bend in the upside down opener when a bungle by Alcaraz gave Murray a set point at 5-4, yet the Spaniard recuperated again with a major serve then, at that point, broke Murray a second time prior to serving out.
Murray depended on progressively frantic measures to contain his adversary's rankling ground-strokes toward the beginning of the second, saving a break point prior to fixing the third round of the set with a venturesome underarm pro.
The World No 121 - who required a special case for a fundamental draw compartment - saved two break focuses in enduring a 11-minute help game and promoted promptly, compelling the Spaniard who got with a strangely weak strike to fall 4-2 behind.
In a wildly cutthroat undertaking, it was nothing unexpected that Murray ought to be made to attempt to serve out the set, however he properly did as such eventually to send their conflict into a decider.
Fears it very well might be the 34-year-old Scot who might blur originally demonstrated unwarranted, as Murray broke again toward the beginning of the third, then, at that point, proved to be the best of an additional 10-minute help game to solidify his benefit. A twofold break successfully fixed a tremendously critical success for Murray following three hours and four minutes.
Speaking to Mark Petchey for Amazon Prime Video, Murray said the win was one of his best since hip resurfacing surgery two years ago.
"It was a brutal match, really tough conditions," he said. "I feel that I should have won that first set. I had a lot of chances but didn't take them. It would have been easy to let the match slip away but I kept fighting and finished it well.
"I wanted to try and match his energy throughout the match. He's obviously a young guy who brings a lot of energy. In a way, I was trying to mirror him as best as I could. It's tough to stay focused and not to get frustrated in these conditions. I did a better job than I have done in a lot of my matches recently of focussing on the next point and not think about what just happened.
"My game has not been great. I've not been happy with how I've been playing so I said to myself this week, 'regardless of how I play, I've never liked the conditions here so just accept that you're probably not going to play great, but the best you can do is fight for every single point, give your best on every single point and see what happens'.
"I played some good stuff today, not always, but a really good attitude and I've won two matches on the back of that."
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