After Andy Murray swept aside the challenge of Igor Andreev (6-1, 6-0) Britain beat Russia 2-1 on Friday to claim a spot in the final of the Hopman Cup mixed teams tennis event for the first time.

Elena Dementieva gave Russia a 1-0 lead when she beat 15-year-old Laura Robson 6-4, 6-0, but Murray made it 1-1 with his singles win and then teamed with Robson to beat Andreev and Dementieva 6-4, 6-7 (6), 7-6 (6) in an exciting mixed doubles climax.

“I didn’t make too many mistakes and I got off to a good start,” Murray said. “It settled me down.

“Today was definitely the best I’ve played so far.”

Britain comfortably took the first set of the decisive doubles and led by a break in the second.

The British pair had to win to earn the right to face Spain, which clinched its place in the final with a win over hosts and top-seeded Australia on Thursday in the other group.

Murray set the tone for the encounter with a comprehensive win over Andreev in just 48 minutes, and contributed vital points throughout the doubles to ensure Britain followed up its earlier Group B wins over Kazakhstan and Germany. He was unbeaten in the group stage, winning all three of his singles matches and combining with Robson for three doubles wins. Robson lost all her singles matches but provided good support for Murray in doubles.

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