Andy Murray's preparation for the US Open remained right on course last night as he clinched his first title of 2010 with a magnificent straights-set victory over Roger Federer in the final of the ATP Rogers Cup. The defending champion prevailed 7-5, 7-5 after outlasting the former world No 1 in a match which was severely disrupted by two lengthy rain delays. The win improved Murray's record against the Swiss ace to seven victories from their 12 meetings and also gave him an element of revenge after he was comprehensively beaten in the final of the Australian Open earlier this year. It has taken the Scot some time to recover from that Melbourne setback but he was in sparkling form in Canada and appears in peak condition as he bids to land his first grand slam crown at the US Open which gets under way in two weeks.
Murray told atptour.com: "It was good for me to win today ? three good results in a row against (David) Nalbandian, Rafa (Nadal) and Roger, so that will give me confidence for next week. "The US Open is the main goal but this is a good start. I played five days in a row from Wednesday ? all the matches right in the heat of the day so it was good for me physically. "I'll try to keep it going in Cincinnati (at this week's Cincinnati Masters) but the most important thing is getting ready for the US Open." When the weather relented it was Murray who forced the issue, his new-found aggressive approach paying dividends against a strangely subdued Federer.
"It was very difficult today," said the 23-year-old. "I was up a lot in the first set and probably should have won it a bit easier. I managed to stay tough mentally, which is always tough against Roger because he started to play some great tennis, but it's a great way to finish the week ? I played very well. "I think (the rain delays) affected both of us. It is difficult. It broke our momentum. "Roger was playing better at the end of the first set and when we came back out I broke him straightaway. "It affected both of us a little bit but I managed to stay strong in the end." * PA