Roddick Rocks Ferrero to Claim US Open Title

Posted on September 9, 2003

Andy Roddick finally caught the baton as the "next great American" Sunday at the US Open, giving newly-crowned No. 1 Juan Carlos Ferrero no chance with a 6-3, 7-6 (2), 6-3 pounding for his first grand slam title. "No more 'What's it feel like to be the future of American tennis?'" said Roddick as he triumphantly entered the interview room. "I can't imagine my name and 'US Open champion' together. It's more than I could ever dream of...I don't think you could have written a script any better, with Pete's retirement. It was just too good...I'm baffled by how calm I felt out there and how easy it was. I almost didn't feel anything out there." Roddick ended the match with a flourish by pumping three aces (23 total for the match), and rises to a career-best No. 2 in the ATP Rankings, leading the tour with six titles this year. Ferrero, who complained he didn't play well, also appeared baffled at being on the receiving end of the A-Rod artillery for the first time, at one point forgetting to change sides. "Right now I am a little bit sad," Ferrero said. "But I have to think I did a great job these two weeks. At the beginning of the week, of the tournament, I didn't expect to be number one and in the final."

In the men's doubles final, the Aussie/Swede combo of Todd Woodbridge and Jonas Bjorkman rallied to beat American twins Bob and Mike Bryan 5-7, 6-0, 7-5 for the title. It was Woodbridge's 77th doubles title, putting him level with John McEnroe on the all-time list and one behind Tom Okker's record, and the fourth slam title for the pair. "This is quite amazing," Woodbridge said. "Jonas and I have played well together from the time we got together. We wanted to win majors and this is our fourth one in three years. I couldn't be happier." Bjorkman/Woodbridge rose to No. 3 on the ATP Team Rankings.

On court today on the dirt in Bucharest (see tournament preview) are (8)A.Martin vs. Mutis, Squillari vs. (3)Sargsian, (4)Sanchez vs. Corretja, Koubek vs. (5)Mathieu, Van Lottum vs. Montanes, and Beck vs. Melzer. In Brazil (see tournament preview) the Monday line-up won't be announced until later in the day, we guess after they wake up for the day around noon.

In the US Open women's doubles final, Martina Navratilova's hopes of winning at the age of 46 were ended by No. 2 seeds Virginia Ruano Pascual and Paola Suarez, who easily beat the former no. 1 and teen partner Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-2, 6-3. "I felt like a little kid, 'Hey I'm in a Grand Slam final,' and then I played like a little kid," said Navratilova, who was broken three times during the match. "I always dreamt of being the youngest champion. I'm now the oldest. But that's OK. This sport has given me so much and I'm just trying to do my part, make sure that I give back." In the mixed doubles final, Bob Bryan and Katarina Srebotnik (who lost in last year's final) rallied to beat Lina Krasnoroutskaya and Daniel Nestor 5-7, 7-5, 7-6. On Saturday, Justine Henin-Hardenne won the women's singles title at the US Open when Kim Clijsters failed to serve out of the first set at 5-4, then crumbled. "I don't know how I'm gonna celebrate, but I just can tell you that I'm the happiest woman in the world right now," said Henin-Hardenne after the win. Keep an eye out for the rankings storm, as Clijsters is No. 1 with six titles and no slams, while H-H is No. 2 with seven titles and two slams. Oops, nice point balance in your rankings WTA, time to revisit that.

On court Monday at Bali (see tournament preview) are Schett vs. Morigami, Obata vs. (9)Harkleroad, Barna vs. Prakusya, and Craybas vs. (8)Cho.

2003 SINGLES TITLE LEADERS (through Sept. 7)
7--Justine Henin-Hardenne (BEL)
6--Kim Clijsters (BEL)
6--Andy Roddick (USA)
5--Roger Federer (SUI)
4--Andre Agassi (USA)
4--Guillermo Coria (ARG)
4--Serena Williams (USA)
3--Juan Carlos Ferrero (ESP)
3--Carlos Moya (ESP)

2003 DOUBLES TEAM TITLE LEADERS (through Sept. 7)
6--K.Clijsters/A.Sugiyama (BEL/JPN)
5--M.Knowles/D.Nestor (BAH/CAN)
4--B.Bryan/M.Bryan (USA)
4--S.Kuznetsova/M.Navratilova (RUS/USA)

Here is a look at the Americans who have won the US Open title in the Open Era (since 1968) and how many attempts it took:

Player - Year - Attempt - Age
Pete Sampras - 1990 - 3rd - 19
John McEnroe - 1979 - 3rd - 20
Andy Roddick - 2003 - 4th - 21
Jimmy Connors - 1974 - 5th - 22
Stan Smith - 1971 - 8th - 24
Andre Agassi - 1994 - 9th - 24
Arthur Ashe - 1968 - 9th - 25

Eight different players have won the past eight Grand Slam singles titles, equaling the longest streak of different winners in the Open Era:
2002 Australian Open- Thomas Johansson
2002 Roland Garros- Albert Costa
2002 Wimbledon- Lleyton Hewitt
2002 US Open- Pete Sampras
2003 Australian Open- Andre Agassi
2003 Roland Garros- Juan Carlos Ferrero
2003 Wimbledon- Roger Federer
2003 US Open- Andy Roddick

Andy Roddick has won 19 consecutive matches for three consecutive titles (TMS-Canada, TMS-Cincinnati, US Open) Will he ever lose again?...U.S. D-Cup captain Patrick McEnroe was, suffice to say, happy with the Open result: "There's been a lot of pressure on him. This will shut a lot of people up that he was all hype. We knew he had it. It's a great day for him and for American tennis. It's a great passing of the baton."...Andy Roddick is 37-2 since teaming with coach Brad Gilbert...Andy Roddick won the junior title at the US Open three years ago, joining Stefan Edberg as the only men to win the junior and tour titles...After the US Open women's final, Justine Henin-Hardenne sent a message to the rest of the WTA players: "I'm feeling very strong right now and think the other players can feel it too."...Andy Roddick held serve 114 of 119 games at the 2003 US Open...Here is an awesomely-horrible headline from "Gilbert's coaching success a product of good coaching"...Jimmy Connors on being inducted into the US Open Court of Champions: "My greatest day was the day I left here. The reason I say that is because I didn't leave anything out, especially at this tournament. When I walked out of here, I left DNA out there on that court. I say that with pride. In walking away, in not playing here anymore, it was the toughest thing I ever did."...Jimmy Connors' name was spelled "Jimmy Conners" on the big screen just before a video tribute to him at the US Open, go USTA...Justine Henin-Hardenne regrets not calling a trainer while cramping in her semifinal match against Jennifer Capriati: "I did a big mistake because I was cramping a lot. I could have a serious injury. Everybody was so upset with myself that I didn't call the trainer. But it's true that I said to myself, 'People are gonna talk about my attitude again.' I'm a fair player I know that now when I need the trainer, I'll call them."...Ask Serena if you're a fair player...David Nalbandian rose to No. 8 in the Champions Race, putting himself in a good position to qualify for the Masters Cup...Agustin Calleri and coach Mariano Monachesi are no longer working together; Nicolas Lapentti and Patricio Rodriguez have also parted company...Check out Roddick Monday on the Today Show, David Letterman, Regis (for Tuesday), ESPN News, and ESPN Outside the Lines, among other outlets on the post Championship media parade.