• French Open, Day Five

Murray: My team wanted me to retire

ESPN staff
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Murray defies injury to progress
Nadal blazes past Istomin No dramas for Kvitova, Wozniacki, Li

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Andy Murray has revealed his team advised him to retire after he struggled with back spasms against Jarkko Nieminen before going on to claim a 1-6 6-4 6-1 6-2 victory.

"I don't know how I won, to be honest," he said. "I had a bit of spasm, it hurt when I got up this morning and it was really bad 20 minutes after practice. I couldn't put any weight on my left leg.

"The guys were telling me to stop after the first set, and we spoke about it before the match [the possibility of retiring during play]. I just decided to play on. I felt a bit bitter, probably end of the second set. I thought, let's give it a go, chasing a few balls down. It's still fairly sore."

Nieminen, meanwhile, was left frustrated at his inability to make the most of his early dominance: "I feel like I had him ‑ I felt that I should have taken the second set. Overall I'm not happy the way I played."

Defending champion Rafael Nadal fired an ominous warning to his rivals as he claims he is in better shape mentally and physically than he was 12 months ago.

"Whereas last year, due to my attitude, which was less positive, it was more difficult for me. The rallies were longer, and I was not at home and I felt it was a bit long. This year I'm having fun, a lot of fun, I'm happy, and I'm not - how can I say? I'm not suffering from the fact that I'm far from home."

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga admitted the postponement of his match against Cedrik-Marcel Stebe had aided his cause. Tsonga had dropped the second set against the German when play was suspended on Wednesday evening, but returned to court on Thursday to secure a 6-2 4-6 6-2 6-1 victory.

"It was children's day yesterday - there was a lot of noise, and I was getting a bit crazy," he said. "So I think it was a good idea the match was stopped yesterday and I could start again in far better conditions for me."

Petra Kvitova insists she has no expectations despite strolling into the third round with a straight sets win over Urszula Radwanska.

"I don't have any expectation. I know that last season was great for me, and it will be very tough to have similar results as last year. I know this season will be very tough with the pressure and with everything else. But I just would like to improve my game and be focused in every practice, every match."

Former world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki insists she is not thinking about the rankings as she looks to win her maiden grand slam in Paris:

"I don't think about the rankings. I think about this tournament that I'm playing. I'm going to give everything in this tournament and we'll see how it goes. I'm happy that I'm healthy. That's the main thing. As a sportsperson, it's frustrating when you cannot give 100% or you feel like you're out there and competing and you know you can do better but your body just doesn't allow you."

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