2 Sep 2016

Murray, Williams shut out noise to advance

9:54 am on 2 September 2016

The $200 million retractable roof for the Arthur Ashe Stadium court looked like money well spent as play went ahead despite steady rain at the U.S. Tennis Open.

The British tennis player Andy Murray.

The British tennis player Andy Murray. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

But while fans stayed dry, officials were showered with complaints about the noise that left umpires pleading for quiet and players unable to hear the ball coming off their racquets.

However the Wimbledon and Olympic tennis champion Andy Murray shut out the noise and Spain's Marcel Granollers to reach the third round as did Venus Williams, who beat Germany's Julia Georges, also in straight sets.

Meanwhile New Zealand's Artem Sitak and his Dutch partner beat an American pair in straight sets to win their first round doubles match.

Second seed Murray ground down the world number 45 in a match involving numerous lung-busting rallies and played under a cacophony of sound with the new roof over Arthur Ashe Stadium court closed.

At times, the players could barely hear the ball off their strings and the rain hammering on the roof was almost deafening but second seed Murray kept calm to clinch a convincing victory.

"At first we didn't know if there was just more people come in at the change of ends, but then we quickly realised it was the rain," Murray said.

"It was tough, you couldn't really hear the ball which makes it tricky. But we're lucky to play under the roof; otherwise there wouldn't be any tennis so it's good for everyone."

Murray led 5-2 in the first set only for Granollers to hit back but the Scot won a game lasting more than 10 minutes to break and clinch it on his seventh set point.

After breaking for 3-1 in the second set, Murray pulled away to double his lead and he broke in the ninth game of the third to earn victory.

Murray, the champion in 2012 and chasing a fourth grand slam title, will now play either 30th seed Gilles Simon or unseeded Italian Paolo Lorenzi.