A month after beating Rajeev Ram in straight sets at Wimbledon, Andy Roddick went three sets again with his fellow American, only yesterday in Atlanta it was in a best-of-3 format match. Roddick was rocky, but won 6-1, 6-7(1), 6-3 in his 2010 summer hardcourt opener.
“If he breaks in the first game of the third, then it’s a long way back,” said Roddick who is just 36 ranking points from falling out of the Top 10. “That was probably the key, the pivotal moment of the match. Then being able to break was huge. But the break doesn’t mean as much if you’re down a break to begin with.”
Roddick won Atlanta back in 2001 for his first career title, and who did he beat for that victory? He defeated his opponent today, Xavier Malisse.
“It’s a little bit coincidental, especially given the history of this tournament,” said Roddick who leads X-Man 8-0. “But we’ve played each other plenty of times since then. A lot’s happened since then. I don’t think there’s going to be a lot of surprises out there. I think we both know each other’s games pretty well.”
Other winners yesterday in Atlanta were Luckas Lacko who upset Lleyton Hewitt and Kevin Anderson, a wnner over Donald Young.
Today in the quarterfinals – which I believe are on TV via Tennis Channel at noon and ESPN2 at 4pm – we have Roddick v. Malisse, Mardy Fish v. Taylor Dent, Anderson v. Lacko and Russell v. Isner.
Isner of course did what he does best in his opener saving match points to survive Gilles Muller in what else, a third set tiebreaker.
For Hamburg fans, the final eight include Melzer v. Starache, F. Mayer v. Ferrero, Bellucci v. Seppi and Golubev v. Istoim. Golubev upset top seed Nikolay Davydenko.
The biggest news in tennis the last 24 hours has centered around Juan Martin Del Potro and a possible early return to tennis.
Is this reveal a ploy to sell a few more tickets and generate some extra buzz, or the plain truth?
While nothing official has come from the Del Potro camp regarding New York, the Argentine did enter the Thailand Open which begins on September 25.
Said Del Potro: “I am looking forward to playing the PTT Thailand Open on my return from injury. I really enjoyed myself on my last visit to Bangkok and hope for good results at this year’s tournament.”
DelPo said earlier in the week he was hopeful on returning for Argentina’s Davis Cup tie against France played the week before Bangkok.
So will he or won’t he? As much as I want to see him play, right now I’d be stunned if he did comeback at the US Open. Wrist injuries can be very complex and mentally challenging to overcome. And at his age and a fragile psyche to match, making that return such a lengthy layoff at a best-of-5 hardcourt Slam with zero preparation just seems to risky to me.
ATLANTA FRIDAY SCHEDULE
STADIUM COURT start 12:00 noon
K Anderson (RSA) vs L Lacko (SVK)
J Erlich (ISR) / J Tipsarevic (SRB) vs R Bopanna (IND) / K Vliegen (BEL)
Not Before 4:00 PM
M Russell (USA) vs  J Isner (USA)
Not Before 7:00 PM
 [WC] A Roddick (USA) vs  X Malisse (BEL)
T Dent (USA) vs  M Fish (USA)
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Nadal, Murray Begin Grass Season at Queen’s Club; Del Potro, Nalbandian Return
There Will Be An Ernests Gulbis Appearance Tonight In Memphis!
Roddick Survives Malisse Scare in Atlanta; Del Potro Improving, Not Playing
Tsonga, Del Potro Make Shanghai Masters Cup Debut Sunday
Nadal, Roddick Murray in Same Half at Wimbledon