The 36-year-old Briton beat Purcell 7-6 (7-2) 3-6 7-5 in two hours and 47 minutes in Toronto.
Murray will face Italian seventh seed Jannik Sinner for a place in the quarter-finals.
Also through to the next round is Wimbledon champion Carlos Alcaraz, 20, who defeated American Ben Shelton 6-3 7-6 (7-3) in his second-round tie.
The Spanish world number one will face Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz after coming through a competitive encounter with 20-year-old Shelton.
There was little to separate Murray and Purcell in the opening stages and although Murray took the first set on a tie-break, world number 78 Purcell rallied in the second to force a deciding set.
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Purcell, 25, went a break up early but three-time Grand Slam winner Murray held his serve at 4-2 down to start his fightback.
At 5-5, Murray was able to hold again and edge ahead before breaking Purcell’s serve in the 12th game of the set to win the match.
Meanwhile, Murray has spoken of his enjoyment at watching Alcaraz in action – especially when he is taking risks.
“The thing that I love about watching him is the freedom that he plays with, and part of that is youth, I think. I just hope he doesn’t lose that,” Murray told the ATP website.
“Sometimes it looks a little bit kamikaze, but he just is totally instinctive. And I love that.”
Both Murray and Alcaraz are preparing for the US Open, which starts on 28 August in New York. Alcaraz is reigning champion after beating Norwegian Casper Ruud last year to win his first Grand Slam title.
Written by: Debby Eselebor
todayFebruary 23, 2024 12 2
todayFebruary 23, 2024 2 2