Rome- Andy Murray maintained his momentum on clay by dispatching Frenchman Jeremy Chardy 6-4 6-3 to reach the third round of the Rome Masters.

Murray had considered missing the tournament to ensure he was fresh for the French Open later this month but opted to play on after winning back-to-back titles in Munich and Madrid - his first titles on clay.

The word No 3, who has not lost a match since marrying long-term girlfriend Kim Sears last month, produced some scintillating tennis at times to make it a 10th straight win on the red dirt, three of them against top-10 opponents, in the last fortnight.

Murray hit 19 winners and made just 10 unforced errors to defeat 38th-ranked Chardy in an hour and 24 minutes as he continued his acclimatisation on clay at sea level after his success at altitude in the Spanish capital.

Chardy surrendered two break points against the Murray serve in the sixth game in what proved to be a crucial moment in the match.

The two-time Grand Slam champion then seized on a double-fault from Chardy before hitting a trademark backhand cross-court winner to claim a vital break of serve, and it was plain-sailing from there.

Courtesy: Sky Sports