Roddick Continues American Woes

19 01 2012

Remember those Americans by the names of Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi? Those were the days…

Before Andy Roddick saw a ranked opponent in the Australian Open, his time was up. Lleyton Hewitt led Roddick 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 before the 11-year pro called his trainer over to check him out. He ended up retiring after this set to give Hewitt the victory. Roddick’s injury is still unclear.

Roddick came into this tournament ranked 15 and looking to finally make some strides after making it to the quarterfinals in last year’s U.S. Open.

This loss followed another American falling in the second round, as 8th ranked Mardy Fish lost in straight sets to unranked Alejandro Falla, 7-6 (7-4), 6-3, 7-6 (8-6).

There is no denying it – America is currently in a tennis-lull. The last American Grand Slam Champion came in 2003 when Andy Roddick won the U.S. Open. Since then, Roddick has found ways to be defeated very early on in tournaments or get very close to winning another one. This year was an early exit. He has been runner-up in four Grand Slam tournaments since defeated Ferrero in New York nine years ago.

Even though we live in a tennis era with Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic, which obviously hinders any other players chances of success, the absence of American victories on the big stage hurts the following of the sport here in the Home of the Brave. What makes it worst is that prior to this group of U.S.A. tennis players, Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi spoiled Americans with their domination of the sport. From 1990-2003, they combined to win 22 Grand Slam Championships and be a runner-up in 10 tournaments.  To go from type of supremacy to the meager single championship in the past nine years obviously pushes fans away and unfortunately pushes them away during a time with some of the best players to ever play the game (Roger and Rafa).

America now has one person left representing them going into the Australian Open third round. 26-year-old John Isner will face Feliciano Lopez tonight at 6:00 p.m. CT, and it should be a good matchup since these two come into the game ranked 17 and 18 for the tournament. This stands as more than simply a third round match-up between the American and Spaniard. U.S.A. needs someone to provide some sort of spark for our tennis nation, and the man that holds the record for longest tennis match ever to be played could provide just that. Even though Isner would most likely have to face Nadal in the next round, at least there would be an American facing off against one of the best players in the tournament.

If Isner can’t get past Lopez tonight, hopefully one of America’s (kind-of) big three – Fish, Isner, and Roddick – can find a way to succeed in one of the other three Grand Slam tournaments in the upcoming year. If this year ends up being another dud, it might be time to start watching some re-runs of the Isner-Mahut match…

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29 05 2012
U.S.A. Tennis Disappoints (Again) « jay's jems

[…] well for Roddick but losing to 88th-ranked Nicolas Mahut 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 Sunday adds to his many disappointments throughout his […]

22 01 2012
Serena falls to Makarova « jay's jems

[…] of a Grand Slam tournament without any man or woman representing the U.S.A. As I recently pointed out, the lack of consistent American tennis players has hurt the sport in American. Serena Williams has […]

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