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Murray crushes Nadal to take Madrid title

Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Andy Murray ended his clay-court hoodoo against Rafael Nadal as he made it back-to-back titles with a stunning victory in the Madrid Open final.

The British No.1 was 0-6 against Nadal on the Spaniard's favourite surface coming into the contest, and trailed 15-5 in their overall head-to-head.

However, after winning his first title on clay last week in Munich, Murray added his maiden Masters triumph on the surface - and 10th overall - with a crushing 6-3 6-2 win in 88 minutes.

Murray is undefeated since getting married to long-term partner Kim Sears, and signed the words "marriage works!" below his signature on the camera lens following his victory.

"It's been nice," Murray told Sky Sports of his marriage. "A lot of people have told me there's the honeymoon period and then it gets harder after that.

"We've been together a very long time, obviously getting married was the next step for us. The tennis has gone well. I've always said that when the personal stuff and your private life is under control then you're happy, then that helps your performances on the court.

"But I feel healthy, I've been training very well with my team."

The win also ended Murray's combined 12-match losing streak to Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer.

It was a far cry from the straight-sets humiliation Nadal dished out to Murray over just 100 minutes in the semi-finals of Roland Garros last year.

"I played a very good match, made very few errors," Murray added. "I dealt with all of the nervy moments that I had pretty well. From my side it was a very good performance. I'm sure Rafa feels he could have played better, but I couldn't have done much more."

Murray also played down suggestions he could be a dark horse to win the French Open.

"I've played well at Roland Garros in the past, had two semi-finals and a couple of quarter-finals," he said. "Last year my game was definitely not ready to win the event whereas a few years before against Rafa I played a very good match.

"That was unfortunate. This gives me confidence but by no means do I go into the French as one of the favourites. But I've given myself an opportunity, that's all you can ask for with the players around. I felt like I deserved to win this week."

Murray will now fly to Rome tomorrow and make a decision or whether or not he will play.

"It would be good to get some matches but it's a very busy few months coming up," he added. "I've played a lot of tennis this year. The French Open and Wimbledon come around very quickly."

Nadal, the nine-time French Open champion, had already endured his most defeats in a clay season (three) for 12 years coming into the tournament but looked to have returned to form this week, as he sought a third straight title in Madrid.

Murray, though, took the initiative from the outset, Nadal winning just two points in the first three games.

The Scot then dug deep to hold for 5-2, saving two break points, and rescued another next time around before taking his first set point in just over 41 minutes.

Murray did not ease up, winning the first four games of the second set before closing it out with his first Championship point.

Nadal now drops to No.7 in the world rankings, the first time in over a decade he has been ranked outside the top five.