| By Long Island Tennis Magazine Staff
Novak Djokovic overcame a stiff neck to advance at the Western & Southern Open on Monday.
Photo Credit: Sidney Beal III/Clique Photography


Former U.S. Open champion Andy Murray has kicked off his time inside the New York bubble with solid victories, following up his win over American Frances Tiafoe on Saturday with a three-set triumph over fifth-seed Alex Zverev in the Western & Southern Open on Monday.

“It was a big one to get through,” Murray said of the 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 victory. “I’m satisfied to get through it against a top player having not played for such a long time, and I get another opportunity to compete again tomorrow. This will give me an idea of where my body is at.”

Murray took advantage of Zverev’s serve troubles as the German coughed up multiple points late in the match with double-faults. The Briton now advances to play Canada’s Milos Raonic for a spot in the quarterfinals.

World number one Novak Djokovic fought through neck discomfort to defeat Ricardas Berankis of Lithuania 7-6(2), 6-4. Djokovic will play American Tennys Sandgren next.

“It’s getting better,” Djokovic said of his neck, which forced him to withdraw from his doubles match earlier in the day. “It’s not where I’d like it to be but it’s heading in the right direction.”

American Jessica Pegula continued her good play by taking out fellow American Amanda Anisimova 7-5, 6-2, placing her in a showdown with Belarus’ Aryna Sabalenka who came from behind to beat Cici Bellis 6-7, 6-4, 7-5.