Great Britain's Andy Murray defeated Lukas Lacko 6-1, 6-2 to advance to the quarterfinals of the 2012 Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships. Murray, who needed just 57 minutes to defeat Lacko, has now won nine matches in a row, including taking home the Gold Medal at the 2012 London Games, and his win last month in the finals of the U.S. Open over Novak Djokovic. Murray will next meet Stanislas Wawrinka and has a 7-4 career lead into the pair’s 12th clash, defeating Wawrinka most recently on his way to winning the Gold Medal at the London 2012 Olympics. The seventh-seeded Wawrinka defeated Jeremy Chardy 7-6(1), 6-7(6), 7-5 to advance to the quarters.
“He had a good U.S. Open and did well in Cincinnati,” said Murray of Wawrinka. “I think hard courts are a good surface for him. I’ve had a lot of tough matches with him over the years, especially on the hard courts. I would expect the same on Friday.”
Also advancing were fourth-seeded Juan Monaco, a winner over Grigor Dimitrov 6-2, 6-1; and third-seeded Janko Tipsarevic, who rallied for a 4-6, 6-3, 6-1 victory against 18th-ranked Gilles Simon.