ANDY Murray claimed an impressive victory over Juan Monaco at the Shenzhen Open in China to reach his first final since becoming the 2013 Wimbledon champion.
The 27-year-old Scot was made to work hard in his semi-final, losing the first set before a strong turnaround saw him take charge of the second and win nine games in a row for a 2-6 6-3 6-0 result over his Argentinian opponent.
The win for Murray, seeded second, boosts his bid to qualify for the ATP World Tour Finals in London as he chases points as well as his 29th career title.
The British number one started the week in 11th place in the race, with only the top eight players guaranteed to qualify.
Murray looked like he was struggling at the beginning of the match, but he started to take charge and kept ahead in the second set before sweeping through the decider.
In Sunday’s final Murray will face world number 22 Tommy Robredo after the 32-year-old Spaniard saw off Colombia’s Santiago Giraldo with a straightforward 6-1 6-4 victory earlier.
Murray was delighted reach his first final in 15 months and told Eurosport 2: “The turning point was when we were 3-3 in the second set, but before that he was dominating the match.
“I found it very tough in the sun - it’s extremely hot and humid and I’m not used to that where I come from. I spend a lot of time in England, it’s pretty cold there most of the time - but I came through.”
Looking to the final, Murray said: “It’ll be a very tough match. Tommy’s a very experienced player. He’s played some very good tennis this year.
“He beat (Novak) Djokovic a few weeks ago in Cincinnati and he’s always a very difficult player to beat so I’ll need to play a good match if I want to win.”