Andy Murray is unbeaten against Australians, but admits he’s never taken on 15,000 at once.


That’s the challenge Murray faces when plays Nick Kyrgios in a blockbuster Australian Open quarter-final at Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday night.

And having ridden a wave of emotion all the way to his 2013 Wimbledon triumph, the British ace is bracing himself against a similar tide of patriotic fervour as he sets about reaching the last four in Melbourne for the fifth time in six years.

“Obviously the crowd will be right behind him. Understandably so,” Murray said on Monday.

“That’s just something that I’ll have to deal with in my way. I’ve played a lot of matches. I’ve played in French Open against French players where the crowd can be very difficult.

“I’ve experienced it before, so hopefully I’ll deal with it well.”

Murray thumped Kyrgios 6-2 6-2 in their only previous meeting, in Toronto last year, but the dual grand slam champion acknowledged that win came in altogether different circumstances.

“Obviously it’s best-of-five sets and it was a fairly empty stadium when we played in Toronto,” Murray said.

“I think Nick enjoys playing in front of a crowd. So that will probably change things a bit, too.”

Kyrgios has lit up Melbourne Park with his electrifying run to the last eight and even Murray says the teenager’s charge has been exciting to see.

“I enjoy watching him play. I think he’s entertaining,” he said.

“He’s had an unbelievable tournament so far. He’s only going to get better and I’m going to have to play a great match to win against him.

“I read that he felt like he could win the Australian Open this year a few weeks ago, so he obviously backs himself a lot.”

But Murray backs himself too, the sixth seed happy to be into his 14th consecutive grand slam quarter-final having dropped only one set in four matches to date this campaign.

“I think my results have showed I have played my best tennis, or played very consistent tennis, at the slams,” he said.

Murray will carry an impeccable 10-from-10 strike rate against Australian opponents into the match.

The winner will face either 2009 champion and third seed Rafael Nadal or seventh-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych in the semi-finals.