Roddick Quick Turn-around for ATP Eastbourne Grass Title
Andy Roddick’s normally-impressive grasscourt game looked adrift last week after an opening-match loss at Queen’s Club. One wildcard and one title later at Eastbourne, it looks like the American is back on track.
On Saturday at the AEGON International in Great Britain, Roddick defeated defending champion Andreas Seppi 6-3, 6-2 for his first title of the year.
“I don’t remember the last time I got broken twice and won 3 and 2,” Roddick said. “I felt real good. My returns this week were close to as well as I have. I was able to close well. I started off not serving great and then made an adjustment…I went from a six-match losing streak to all of a sudden winning a tournament. It is a 180-degree turnaround.”
Roddick was helped during the week by two mid-match retirements, from fellow American Sam Querrey in the first round and Belgian Steve Darcis in the semifinals. It was Roddick’s 31st career title, and he ties Roger Federer’s record of at least one title during the last 12 years.
It was Roddick’s fifth title on grass, and through the first six months of the season he is the only American male to win a singles title.
“The thing that makes sports great is there is no script,” said Roddick, who entering the tournament had lost his last six matches since beating Federer in Miami. “You can draw it up, and it rarely works out the way this week has. I think, as I’ve gotten older, I guess I’ve learned to appreciate this a little bit more.”
Ferrer Wins ATP ‘s-Hertogenbosch Grasscourt Crown
Spaniard David Ferrer followed-up his 2008 ‘s-Hertogenbosch title with another on Saturday, beating German qualifier Philipp Petzschner 6-3, 6-4 at the UNICEF Open.
“This is special for me because grass is maybe my worst surface,” Ferrer said. “On a claycourt or hardcourt, my game is more adapted…The key was with my serve. I served very good all the match.”
Ferrer improved to 15-15 in career finals, winning his fourth title this year after Auckland (d. Olivier Rochus), Buenos Aires (d. Nicolas Almagro) and Acapulco (d. Fernando Verdasco). Petzschner fell to 1-2 in career finals.
“If I want to beat him, I have to play at my highest level,” Petzschner said. “But I’m happy with the week. I played really good tennis.”
1st Career Grass Title for Petrova in Netherlands
Russian veteran Nadia Petrova captured her career-first grasscourt title on Saturday at the Unicef Open in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands, defeating Polish qualifier Urszula Radwanska 6-4, 6-3 for her 11th career title.
“I must say I’m happy to win today in straight sets,” Petrova said. “The beginning of the match was a little bit rusty — I lost my serve, even though I was 40-0 up. That put me in a little bit of an uncomfortable situation. But I really controlled my emotions well and broke back to get into the match.”
Radwanska, the sister of No. 3-ranked Aggie Radwanska, was gifted a spot in the final when former No. 1 Kim Clijsters defaulted their semifinals due to an abdominal issue, choosing to play it safe for the beginning of Wimbledon next week.
Petrova improved to 11-11 in career finals, and Radwanska was appearing in her career first. Petrova’s previous best result on grass was a runner-up effort at Eastbourne in 2008.
Petrova almost made it a double Dutch, losing in the doubles final with Russian partner Maria Kirilenko to top seeds and French Open champs Sara Errani and Roberta Vinco of Italy 6-4, 3-6, 11-9.
Paszek Saves 5 Match Points to Win WTA Eastbourne
Unseeded Austrian Tamira Paszek completed her Cinderella week at the AEGON International when she saved five match points on Saturday in the final, defeating No. 5 seed Angelique Kerber 5-7, 6-3, 7-5 for the title at Eastbourne.
“I was dead tired in the third set,” said Paszek after capturing her third career title and first on grass. “I could hardly move. I just gave all I had left, and it was just enough. The feelings, I cannot describe them. I was sitting on the couch at home a week ago, drive from Birmingham, played a horrible match there, no confidence. I was like, ‘Just try to get at least one win under your belt before Wimbledon.’”
Paszek trailed 3-5 in the third set when she saved the five match points. The Austrian improved to 3-1 in career finals.
“Tamira was playing very well in the important moments, and also when I had the match points, so I couldn’t do anything,” said Kerber, who fell to 2-2 in career finals. “Well done to her. It’s okay, though. It was a great practice week. I had a lot of great matches, so now I’m ready for Wimbledon. Okay I lost today, but still I was in the final. And it was a good match. I did everything I could today, she was just better.”
Paszek entered the event with just two WTA-level victories all year and 11 first-round losses. Kerber after the final leads all WTA players with 40 wins in 2012.
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Tennis-X Blog: Roddick, Schiavone Sliding Along on Grass Wednesday; Thursday Previews
Radwanska, 4 Slam Champs, 6 of Top 10 at Eastbourne: ATP/WTA Previews
Paszek Beats Mattek-Sands in QB; Groth Wins WTA Guangzhou
Is Roger Federer’s Worst Surface Now Grass?