Murray dictated play from the off, drawing his Austrian opponent all over the court as he raced to a 6-3, 6-1, 6-1 victory in just 103 minutes.
The Scot, who is yet to drop a set in Melbourne, was delighted with his triumph. “I am very pleased,” said Murray. “It was a match expected to be difficult but I was intense from the start and I dictated a lot of points on my forehand and didn’t make many mistakes.
“It was quite windy and I didn’t want to get behind in any of the sets. I enjoyed it in the end and it was one of those matches where everything I hit went right.”
World No5 Murray will now play the unseeded Alexandr Dolgopolov in the last eight after the Ukrainian upset fourth seed Robin Soderling 1-6, 6-3, 6-1, 4-6, 6-2.
Dolgopolov is playing his first ever Australian Open but has already defeated top seeds such as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga along the way – and Murray knows he will have to continue his emphatic form to overcome his next opponent.
“If I keep playing like I am I will give myself a good chance to win matches,” he said. “It was one of the best I’ve played but I need to be switched on for the next match.”
Meanwhile, top seed Rafael Nadal joined Murray in the last eight with a 6-2, 6-4, 6-3 victory over the rejuvenated Marin Cilic.
Serving at 73 per cent Nadal looks in supreme form entering the later stages of the grand slam as fans look to a possible semi-final showdown Murray. But the world No1 will first have to overcome fellow countryman David Ferrer in the quarter-finals.
The Spaniard has been suffering with a virus since the New Year but on Monday said: “Today was the first day I felt perfect physically.”
World No2 Roger Federer faces fellow Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka on Tuesday as third seed Novak Djokovic takes on Wimbledon finalist Tomas Berdych for a place in the semi-finals.
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BIOGRAPHY: Eric Bailly