Monday, January 16, 2006

The Andy Roddick Show Arrives in Oz

First Round, Roddick def. Lammer 6-4 6-2 6-2

"It really pissed me off. It put a little bit of a chip on my shoulder, I guess. I don't know if it will end up being a blessing in disguise or not. It's probably the most disappointing loss I've had." -- Andy Roddick, on his first-round loss to Gilles Muller at the 2005 US Open

Andy's Swiss opponent Michael Lammer had joked that he was going to talk to Roger Federer about how to beat Andy. Looks like the phone connection went dead as Andy took out Lammer in straight sets. Well done, Andy!

Image hosted by Photobucket.comTHE ENTERTAINER. Balancing fuzzy balls on his tongue is just one of Andy's many talents.

Although Andy was the heavy favorite in this match, getting past the first round is a significant first step towards erasing the US Open nightmare. He was sloppy in the first set, a bit nervous, he had no aces and his backhand was suspect again, but once he won the first set he managed to settled down and then the famous Roddick personality was able to shine through. He enjoyed himself by making a lot of noise, trash-talking Lammer, and playing it up for the Aussie audience, who ate it up. Roddick is quite popular in Oz, as was apparent from the shots of fanboys with "ARod" painted on their chests, the group of folks wearing the green "Pong" t-shirts, the American flags, the giant "ACE! ACE! Baby!" poster, not to mention the dozens of lovely young women all dolled up. Even Patrick McEnroe remarked: "Andy brings out all the beautiful people!" LOL.

So far, Andy seems to be making good on his promise to be more aggressive as he kept blasting away at Lammer's backhand. His movement looked great. I was quite happy to see the playful and aggressive Andy of years past finally make his reappearance. I am still not thrilled to see that he is still wearing the boring all-white outfit but he did change is shirt twice, first to a gray shirt and then to a black shirt. The backwards cap is back, reminiscient of the young Andy circa 2001-2002. Personally, I prefer the hat flipped back around. He looks more intimidating when he wears the trucker hat, in my opinion. But as long as he's confidence and winning, he can play naked for all I care.

Video highlights from day one can be found here.

Andy's post-match interview can be found here.

Several watermark-free photos from yesterday's match are now available in my photo gallery. Enjoy.

So Andy's next opponent will be South African Wesley Moodie, another big hitter. They have never met before. Check the official Australian Open website for exact time of Roddick's second round match.

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Second seed Andy Roddick buried the disappointment of losing in the first round of last year's U.S. Open with a 6-4 6-2 6-2 victory over Swiss qualifier Michael Lammer at the Australian Open on Monday.

Roddick, who had said losing to Gilles Muller in the first round in New York last year was the biggest disappointment of his career, predictably beat Lammer in straight sets.

The 23-year-old American, who won the invitational Kooyong Classic in Melbourne on Saturday, had not played a competitive ATP tour match since the Paris Masters last November due to a painful back injury.

While Roddick appeared to win comfortably, Lammer was a stubborn opponent, nullifying Roddick's powerful service game with some solid returns, though the American's blistering forehand was put to good use with 15 winners.

"I don't really pay too much attention to aces," said Roddick who only served seven, the last of which sealed the match. "I like to get my first serve percentage up above 60, 65 percent.

"That's the number I look at. I think it was at 58 tonight. That's a little low, but it did get better as the match progressed."

Roddick added he still had plenty to work on heading into his second round match with South Africa's Wesley Moodie.

"I won comfortably but there is room for improvement as well.

"I felt good because, you know, even the points I was losing, I felt like I was losing them on my terms.

"I thought I was hitting the ball big and attacking. It felt clean today."

Roddick said he would work on keeping his concentration throughout his next match after it slipped a few times on Monday.

"I felt like I just maybe lapsed in concentration a couple times. I played the big points pretty well, and then I'd be up 30-love sometimes and kind of miss a couple of shots.

"But I guess you'd rather have it that way than the other. Overall I thought it was a pretty good performance.

"A win is a win in my mind. Tough, easy, you just want to keep advancing."

O! Canada!

A little tidbit from Canada's "Weekly Scoop", page 23:
Hot Tennis star, Andy Roddick, tells "Weekly Scoop" he can't wait to get back to Toronto. Roddick spoke to us exclusivel y at his foundation fundraiser in Florida.

"I am looking forward to coming back to Toronto to play tennis this summer. I always play well there, and the people are friendly," Roddick says, adding that he met his ex-lover, Mandy Moore, in Canada's largest city. But there's hope: so far there's no love match for the tennis star.

"I would be open to meeting someone in Toronto, but I am presently happy as a bachelor,” he said. "I will just wait and see if Toronto is good to me!"

Five-time Grammy winner, Lionel Richie, performed at the Seminole Hard Rock as part of Roddick's charity event.

More gossip about Andy and Maria Sharapova came in. Click on the "Andy's Love Life Updates" link to read more.


Noelle De Guzman said...

The demons of that Muller match were haunting me as I watched the Lammer match. Andy getting broken as he served for the first set the first time contributed to the bad flashbacks. :o I'm glad he made it through.

kathleen said...

HEY I WAS THE GIRL WITH THE ACE ACE BABY POSTER. lol wow thanks for the mention =)

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