Despite his win on Monday, Murray again played down his chances of winning the title in NY.
But on the next point, the way he scampered forward to pick up a stop volley from Duckworth and guided it down the line, was nearly vintage Murray, prompting a fist pump. But considering all the pain Murray has experienced in his hip, sprinting toward the net to chase down a drop volley and put it away was something to celebrate.
The 33-year-old, whose three Grand Slam titles have earned him something resembling adjunct status to the Big Four, upset eighth-seeded Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov 6-3, 6-2, 7-5.
Murray eventually ground out a 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 7-5 6-3 victory in hot and sticky conditions on the new Louis Armstrong Stadium and moves through to a second-round clash with 31st seed Fernando Verdasco.
Both felt good physically, though not quite as good about their chances of contending for the title.
It was Murray's first appearance in a Grand Slam since last year's Wimbledon quarter-finals, almost a year since he underwent hip surgery.
"(To be a contender) I would have been able to train and practice a lot more than what I have done", he said. "I would have played more matches in the build-up to the tournament". I think I'm still just taking it one match at a time.
Murray said: "There are things that I want to focus on longer-term that are going to be beneficial for my game, like a game style that I would like to be playing". It's a little bit more sheltered from the wind.
Trump mocked for appearing to incorrectly color in the USA flag
Azar may not have realized it at the time, but the image shows that Trump had colored a blue stripe onto the American flag. One netizen, Perfect Pour (@counteroffive), pointed out that what made Trump's mistake entertaining was that the U.S.
The 2016 champion couldn't defend his title a year ago and needed two left knee surgeries, but has had some good results this summer.
The three-time slam victor, now ranked at 101, followed up his quarter-final run at the Cincinnati Masters with a strong showing against the Bulgarian, who he defeated in the first round of a grand slam for the second time running. And I can see that the last tournaments, it went really high, from struggling in the match to competing at a really high level.
The three-time grand slam champion is in NY with wife Kim and his two daughters, Eadie and two-year-old Sophia.
"This year is kind of a transition year", he said. "I am just coming back from injury so you never know how your body will react".
Man of the moment Stefanos Tsitsipas won his first main-draw match at Flushing Meadows, beating veteran qualifier Tommy Robredo 6-3 7-6 (7/1) 6-4, while there was an emphatic 6-0 6-3 6-4 victory over Donald Young for third seed Juan Martin del Potro.
"Sometimes on the off-days at slams I would hit for, like, an hour and a half; in my opinion, it's too much", he said. But he improved as Monday went on and hopes that continues. "Hopefully I feel good and take it from there".
A former champion played well in his games, facing five break points and suffering two breaks of serve to limit the damage behind his initial shot.