Andy Murray launched his clay-court campaign with a straight-sets win over Romania’s Victor Hanescu at the Monte Carlo Masters on Tuesday
The fourth-seeded British number one overcame a sluggish start to win 6-3 6-2 in one hour and 25 minutes and book his place in the third round.
“I’m very happy with it,” Murray said when asked about his performance. “The start was tough, he played a few good shots and broke me a couple of times but I’m happy with the way I moved.
“I was getting good shape on my shots and didn’t make too many mistakes. I could have served a little better but apart from that I’m very happy.”
Murray had confirmed his status as the form player of 2009 by beating Novak Djokovic in the final of the Miami Masters 10 days ago to clinch his third title of the season and the biggest of his career so far.
The Scot has struggled to match his success on hard courts and grass on clay, failing even to reach the quarterfinals in any event last year.
He was broken twice in succession in the opening set as the first four games all went against the serve, but gained control in an outing the 21-year-old feels will help him rediscover the movement needed on the game’s slowest surface.
“It’s just practice, you need to let it happen,” Murray added on Sky Sports 1. “It’s easy on clay when the ball is out wide to panic a little bit but you cut the corners much better if you slide into the shot.
“The top players do that very well and I’ve been working on that the last few days.”