Murray desperate for claycourt boost

MONTE CARLO: Andy Murray begins his 2010 claycourt campaign at the Monte Carlo Masters this week, desperate for a morale-boost as the French Open countdown begins.

Following a second-round exit at the Miami Masters last month, the British world number four took a wild-card entry for the 2.3-million-euro tournament on the Riviera where the 23-year-old made the semi-finals 12 months ago.

After losing to American journeyman Mardy Fish in straight sets on the Miami hardcourts, Murray admitted his morale had taken a battering.

"It''s just I need to get my mind right, I need to get focused again," confessed the losing Australian Open finalist.

"When I do that, my game will get better again. That''s for sure."

Murray had hoped to get on court at Monte Carlo Country Club on Sunday, but his opening doubles match, alongside Ross Hutchins, was postponed because of rain.

His singles won''t begin until after a first-round bye, with his first opponent being the winner from the match between Brazil''s Tomas Bellucci and Philip Kohlschreiber of Germany.

Three first round matches were completed on Sunday.

Russian Igor Andreev beat Italy''s Simone Bolelli 6-3, 6-4 while Italian Andreas Seppi saw off Olivier Rochus 7-6 (7/3).

The Belgian, who defeated Monaco top seed Novak Djokovic in the Miami second round, retired with a back injury.

German Michael Berrer advanced over Evgeny Korolev of Kazakhstan 6-1, 6-4.

Missing from the field at the non-obligatory event in Monte Carlo are Roger Federer and Miami winner Andy Roddick.

Argentine Juan Martin Del Potro, Russia''s Nikolay Davydenko and Swede Robin Soderling are all out injured.

World number three Rafael Nadal is bidding for an historic sixth Monte Carlo title.