Andy Murray avoids any mistakes at Wimbledon
ANDY Murray ensured there was only one sensational upset on Saturday afternoon at Wimbledon as he saw off Australia's John Millman in straight sets.
While Murray was overcoming a spirited challenge from his 67th-ranked opponent, all eyes were on Court One and the remarkable downfall of Novak Djokovic.
There was no escaping the news for Murray on Centre Court but he managed to put aside all thoughts of what might be to come and wrapped up a 6-3 7-5 6-2 victory.
The Scot is now favourite to add to his 2013 title but told BBC One: "I need to reach the final for (Djokovic's) result to have any bearing on me.
"I have very tough guys in my half of the draw, especially in the next round."
Murray will play either Nick Kyrgios or Feliciano Lopez in round four on Monday.
Should it be Kyrgios, Murray will be buoyed by the fact this victory made it 18 wins from 18 matches against Australians at tour level - although he was beaten by Kyrgios at the Hopman Cup in January.
His match against Millman officially lasted two hours and 11 minutes, but in reality was significantly longer thanks to the bizarre decision of tournament organisers not to keep the roof shut.
No sooner had they opened it following the conclusion of the previous match than rain began to fall and the covers came on.
It was then kept open but the players were forced off twice in quick succession at the start of the second set and the rest of the match was played under cover.
Millman was through to the third round at Wimbledon for the first time after knocking out 26th seed, and renowned grass hater, Benoit Paire.
Like many players these days, Millman has made his breakthrough in his mid-20s, although his progress was stalled by a serious shoulder injury.
During his recovery, the 27-year-old spent some time working for a friend's finance company back home in Brisbane.
It was in his home town in 2013 that he played Murray for the first time and pushed him close.
There looked little chance of the same thing happening here when the Scot raced through the first three games in just seven minutes and he recovered from a minor blip to take the set comfortably.
Murray was being watched from the Royal Box by a host of sporting stars including David Beckham but mum Judy left the posh seats to join his support camp.
The Scot would surely have hoped that being on Centre Court would protect him from the vagaries of the British summer but just one point into the second set rain began to fall and the players were forced off.
Only two points were possible on the restart before the weather intervened again and the roof was finally deployed, Beckham earning a big cheer for joining in the Mexican wave as the crowd waited for play to restart.
Murray struggled to find his rhythm on the resumption and Millman adopted a more aggressive attitude but the home favourite stepped things up and at 5-3 he twice forced set point.
He could not take either and at the change of ends a huge roar erupted as the Centre Court scoreboard showed Djokovic's defeat to Sam Querrey.
Murray would have tried to put that out of his mind but his focus had certainly wavered as he lost the first three points serving for the set and was broken.
He had got dragged into a battle but, after 15 minutes and five break points on Millman's serve at 5-5, he finally broke again and, serving for the set for a second time, made no mistake.
The relief of getting over the line in the second set allowed Murray to relax and he reeled off the first four games of the third before clinching victory with his eighth ace.
Asked about the support from the Royal Box, Murray said: "I love all sports and follow all sorts of different sports, so when athletes from other sports come in to watch your one it's obviously very nice, nice for the players obviously and it gives you a little bit of a boost, so I'm glad I managed to play a good match and get through today."
Murray did not express any sense of satisfaction over Djokovic's exit, and stressed it was to be expected that he would eventually have a grand slam match where his level slipped.
"Novak's run has been amazing," Murray said.
"He almost found a way to get back into that one today and what he's done in the last 12 months, 18 months, I don't think we'll see for a long, long time. (It's) unfortunate for him but amazing run he's been on.
"Right now everyone expects Novak to win every match he plays, but the level of consistency he's had has been amazing and it's normal in a way to have one match or two matches where you're not playing at your best and your opponent plays a great match.
"It's impossible to win every match you play in every tournament and his amazing run's come to an end today."