Valencia - Top seed Andy Murray survived a scare before advancing to the quarter-finals of the Valencia Open on Thursday when he defeated Argentina's Leonardo Mayer 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.
The world number four from Britain, who is returning from a six-week wrist injury lay-off, looked set for a comfortable victory as he broke serve in the seventh game of the first set to seal a one-set lead.
But world number 64 Mayer hit back, breaking serve twice as he raced to a 5-0 lead in the second set. Murray was able to recover one of the breaks, but could not prevent the Argentine from levelling the match.
The experience of Murray eventually told in the third set as he broke serve in the sixth game to open up a 4-2 lead before going on to close out victory with his eighth ace after two hours and 22 minutes.
Second seed Nikolay Davydenko and fourth seed Fernando Verdasco, both strong contenders to join Murray at the ATP World Tour Finals in London later this month, cruised into the quarter-finals.
Davydenko knocked out Juan Monaco of Argentina 6-3, 7-5 while Verdasco defeated Serbian Janko Tipsarevic 6-3, 6-3.