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Matteo Berrettini says he still gets a little star-struck by Andy Murray ahead of their US Open third round clash.

The Italian has beaten Murray in their last two meetings, the most recent of which came in the final of Stuttgart earlier this summer.

Despite that, he says he still feels a great deal of awe towards the three-time Grand Slam winner, and that is unlikely to ever change.

Asked about his relationship with Andy Murray, Matteo Berrettini said: “We're friends, but we're not like best friends. A good relationship.

“Yeah, I mean, he had a crazy hip surgery. Everybody saw it. It's not easy to come back, especially when he was like No. 1 in the world. Mentally it must have been, like, really tough for him.

“But I think it's inspiring the will that he has, the love that he has for this sport. I always admired that.

“We often practice together, as well. Yeah, when I was a kid I was watching him in TV. For me still kind of like a dream coming true playing against these kind of players.

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“I remember 2016 he played against Paolo Lorenzi here. My brother, he played quallies here, the juniors. He warmed up Paolo. I was like, Wow, you're playing next to Andy, and now I'm playing against him.

“It's something that I really appreciate. That's why I'm even happier for the match now I'm going to play.”

Matteo Berrettini and Andy Murray have actually practiced together recently, so they should be well-acquainted with each other’s games ahead of this one.

The Italian, though, says practice doesn’t give as great an insight into the hitting partner than many believe.

“In general, I always look for players that they have a strong energy that they really want to practice hard, because that's what I like to do,” he said. “He's one of those. He's a hard worker.

“Yeah, we practiced actually before the tournament here, on Armstrong. It was a great set. So, yeah, I don't specifically, like, look for him because he has a certain kind of ball, but I like his mentality, I like the way he practices. That's why I like to practice with him.”

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