ANDY MURRAY hopes the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be his lucky charms this weekend after the Royal couple watched Britain's No.1 move within one victory of an Olympic medal.
Murray dazzled William and Kate on a sunny Court One at Wimbledon as the Scot hammered 11th seed Nicolas Almagro 6-4, 6-1 to set up a semi-final against Novak Djokovic today.
Murray hit 15 aces and played his best tennis of the tournament to see off Almagro, but he knows he will have to up his game even further to see off Djokovic and go on to win a possible final against Roger Federer, who defeated him in the Wimbledon final four weeks ago.
That is where Murray thinks William and Kate may be useful. The Royal couple have been in the crowd when a number of British athletes have medalled at the Games and Murray would like them to return for this weekend's medal matches.
Laura Robson, Murray's mixed doubles partner, suggested the Royal pair have a midas touch when it comes to supporting British athletes, and the 25-year-old agreed, saying: "Yeah, they were at velodrome when Chris Hoy won gold. I don't know if they are going to but, hopefully, they will be able to come back at the weekend."
Murray chatted briefly with William and Kate in between his two victories yesterday – he and Robson beat Czech pair Radek Stepanek and Lucie Hradecka – and he was delighted the couple were there.
"It's great when they come along to watch," Murray said. "We talked about all the different sports at the Games. I have obviously seen them when I have been watching TV.
"They are everywhere and yet they seem to be enjoying it. It's always nice when you're playing in front of royalty. When you get people like that coming along it helps raise the profile of the sport."
Murray is desperate to win an Olympic medal following his defeat to Federer last month and his disappointing performance in Beijing four years ago when he lost in the first round to little-known Yen-Hsun Lu.
The Scot cited home advantage as key to his progression through to his first Wimbledon final and he was therefore disappointed to see row upon row of empty seats on Court One against Almagro.
He hopes organisers will ensure the stands are packed when he takes on Djokovic third on Centre today.
"I would like to see all the seats full in all of the stadia but for whatever reason they haven't been," the Scot said. "The support inside and outside the stadiums has been great so, hopefully, over the weekend, we will get all the courts packed.
"Centre Court was really busy the last two rounds I have played on there and hopefully they will all be full. Everyone wants to see that. Lots of people want to see the Games, there are lots of people trying to get tickets and it's not easy, so I don't want to see any empty seats."
Djokovic sent out an ominous warning to Murray when he made light work of Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, defeating the world number six 6-1, 7-5.
Some of Djokovic's tennis in the first set was particularly impressive, but he knows he will have to block out a partisan crowd today.
"Am I going to enjoy being the bad guy? It's something that is going to be expected," Djokovic said. "He is the home favourite and someone who carries British tennis, the whole nation.
"Everyone will be watching on television and hoping he can get through to the finals and win a medal. I will try to focus on my game. I will have to play my top game to win."
Murray will have little, if any, time to recover from his game against Djokovic as he and Robson are due to face Lleyton Hewitt and Sam Stosur fourth on Court One.
The Scot is not concerned about burn-out, however.
"I knew when I went ahead with the mixed doubles it was going to be an extra physical effort and that the days are going to be long, but you don't get a chance like this often," he said.