|Posted on June 29, 2009 at 10:46 PM|
Roddick serves his way past Berdych
Monday, 29 June 2009
Written by Barry Newcombe
Andy Roddick's cleared another hurdle in his pursuit of the Wimbledon title as he defeated Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic in straight sets to reach the quarter-finals.
Roddick won 7-6 (7-4), 6-4, 6-3 in one hour and 48 minutes and is now one victory short of his third Wimbledon semi-final. The player who stands in his way is the former Wimbledon champion Lleyton Hewitt of Australia.
Roddick turned Berdych's form upside down in his win. Berdych had come into the last 16 without dropping a set, something he had not achieved in a Grand Slam since 2007. This showed that he was finding his feet again on grass and he might even have fancied his chances of making the quarter-finals.
Roddick blew all that away with a strong and accurate hitting performance that justifies his optimism before Wimbledon started and also reflects the specific build-up for the tournament by his coach Larry Stefanki.
Stefanki knew that Roddick had made two Wimbledon finals and came away beaten each time and he was convinced that he and Roddick should be able to make the extra steps needed. Berdych was one of the victims of that philosophy.
Roddick's victory owed much to the power of his serving. He served 24 aces during the match and did not offer a single break point. Berdych challenged him strongly, as Roddick had anticipated, in the first set in particular but once the American had wrapped that up, the pattern was established. Berdych simply could not come close enough to Roddick for long enough to do any real damage.
Roddick won the first set tiebreak 7-4. No tiebreak was required at the end of the second set when Roddick simply kept forcing errors from the Czech. In the third set, Roddick again achieved a break of serve and raced away to lead 4-2. From then on, there was never any danger of him losing the match.
Roddick carries the American flag all too often at Wimbledon. He is the only American player to reach the fourth round in the past four years, which says much about his prowess and ambition on grass. He has to show that he has that extra class to make a difference.
Wimbledon 29 June 2009 - Tomas Berdych had been one of only two men who had not dropped a set coming into the fourth round but he failed to trouble Andy Roddick with his baseline tactics and went out after an hour and 48 minutes.