Day before meeting with ATP, Murray advances in Madrid
Murray's groundstrokes forced Stepanek into 32 unforced errors, and the 17th-ranked Briton hit 14 winners, three of them with his forehand as Stepanek crowded the net. He will next face 15th-seeded Juan Ignacio Chela.
"[That's] one of the best matches I've played, not since I've been back from injury [but] since I've been on the Tour," said Murray, who missed three months with a wrist injury.
The Scotsman will be meeting with the ATP on Tuesday to discuss comments he made about gambling in tennis last week that have led officials to call in experts in an effort to keep the sport free of match-fixing.
Murray backed off his earlier claims that fixed matches were common knowledge. He said most had heard about the three or four players who refused to be paid to lose matches.
"As soon as I got here, I got to speak to the players and told them what happened," Murray said. "Everyone understands what I meant. I'm glad it's been kind of cleared up."
Ginepri committed more unforced errors (44-35), won fewer service breaks (2-3) and hit less winners (24-29), but still managed to overcome the Austrian with the big shot when he needed it.
The 72nd-ranked Ginepri will play defending champion Roger Federer, who beat the American in last year's quarterfinals before ultimately winning in three sets over Fernando Gonzalez for his first title in Spain.
Need the scores from any match played in this or any other tournament? Results
There are still four places for next month's Masters Cup in Shanghai up for grabs with less than 100 points separating No. 7 through No. 23 in the points standings. Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Nikolay Davydenko have already qualified.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press