ATP Indy Event Misses Roddick, Stiffs Blake
Andy Roddick’s withdrawal from the Indianapolis Tennis Championships has left the event with a hodgepodge of talent, least of which (or most of which?) is top seed Dmitry Tursunov.
Tournament officials announced a hopeful plea of getting James Blake for the event, apparently a wish that never came to fruition.
Tournament Director Kevin Martin later told the Indianapolis Star that Blake wanted the same appearance fee as Roddick, but the event in the end decided he wasn’t worth it.
“We couldn’t meet his expectations (financially),” Martin said. “It just wasn’t going to happen. I couldn’t do it. James is a great person and a great supporter of this event.”
Roddick withdrew from the event with the same hip injury that forced him to miss the Davis Cup.
Joining the Russian Tursunov among the seeds are Dudi Sela, Sam Querrey, Igor Kunitsyn, Benjamin Becker, Yen-Hsun Lu, Marc Gicquel and Denis Istomin. Denis Istomin? Double ouch.
An ignominious beginning to the US Open Series for 2009.
Wildcard went to Taylor Dent, and Newport winner Rajeev Ram and NCAA champ Devin Britton, who face each other in the opening round.
Other opening-round matches of interest are (3) Querrey vs French veteran Arnaud Clement, (7) Gicquel vs. the explosive Ernests Gulbis, and (2) Sela vs. the rhymin’ Vince Spadea.
Other notables in the draw are John Isner and Marcos Baghdatis.
Defending champs in the field are Tursunov (2007) and Robby Ginepri (2005), and the event begins play on Sunday.
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