June 25, 2018 / 6:19 PM / 8 months ago

Tennis-Murray beats Wawrinka to claim first win since return

EASTBOURNE, Engkand, June 25 (Reuters) - Andy Murray claimed his first win since returning from a hip injury as he beat fellow three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka 6-1 6-3 in the first round of the Eastbourne championships on Monday.

Murray, who took a wildcard into the seaside event as a fitness test for next week’s Wimbledon, looked sharp on a sun-baked centre court and tasted victory for the first time since beating Benoit Paire in the last 16 of Wimbledon 350 days ago.

Last week at Queen’s Club, Murray fell at the first hurdle to Nick Kyrgios in three sets and afterwards expressed doubts over his readiness to tackle Wimbledon.

And the former world number one could not have been handed a tougher draw in Eastbourne against Wawrinka, also a wildcard who has suffered his own injury woes this year, with the Swiss having beaten him eight times in their 18 career meetings.

Yet after a tight opening three games, Murray took control as his defensive skills forced a rash of errors from Wawrinka.

His movement looked smooth and the world number 156 will go into a second-round clash with new British number one Kyle Edmund in good spirits, providing there is no adverse reaction.

Murray broke twice to take the first set and his only moment of alarm came when serving at 4-3 in the second set when he had to fight off three break points.

Wawrinka, whose ranking is even lower at 225 after a tough return from knee surgery, looked flat though and double-faulted on match point in the next game. (Reporting by Martyn Herman Editing by Ian Chadband)

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