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Andy Murray continued his excellent preparation for Wimbledon with a second successive title.
The former world number one followed up his win at Surbiton last week with a flawless display to lift the Rothesay Nottingham Open.
Murray beat Frenchman Arthur Cazaux 6-4 6-4 in the final to make it 10 wins in a row.
That is his best sequence since 2017, when he still topped the world rankings and was not playing with a metal hip.
And he will now head to his favourite stomping ground at Queen’s, where another good week will see him improve his ranking enough to be seeded at SW19.
He made it through the week at Nottingham without dropping a set, but it was a second-tier Challenger event so he will receive a truer test of where his game is at next week at Queen’s, with the likes of Carlos Alcaraz, Matteo Berrettini and Holger Rune all in the draw.
However, on the evidence of his movement, serving and matchplay this week, he looks a good bet to enjoy his best run at Wimbledon since he hobbled out of the 2017 quarter-finals with the hip injury that derailed his career.
His physicality was tested here as he won his semi-final at 6.30pm on Saturday night but was back on at 11am for the final, which was brought forward owing to the threat of rain on Sunday afternoon.
He hit the ground running, though, breaking the world number 181 in the opening game before eventually seeing the first set out 6-4.
The second set was much tighter, owing to Cazaux’s big serve, but Murray broke at 4-4 and then served it out to get his hands on the trophy.
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