Thu, Aug 02, 2007 - Page 20 News List

Roddick cruises to reach third round of Legg Mason

AP , WASHINGTON

Andy Roddick stretches for a forehand return against Tomas Zib of the Czech Republic during their second-round match at the Legg Mason Classic on Tuesday in Washington. Roddick won in straight sets.

PHOTO: AP

Andy Roddick cruised into the third round of the Legg Mason Tennis Classic on Tuesday with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Czech Tomas Zib.

It was the first match for top-seeded Roddick, a two-time winner here and this year's top-seeded player, since losing to Frank Dancevic in the semi-finals last week in Indianapolis.

Roddick said on Monday he was slowed in that match in part because of an upset stomach brought on by a late-night fast food meal.

But Roddick looked healthy enough against Zib. Roddick broke serve to take a 4-3 lead in the first set, which he finished off three games later with an emphatic ace that came after he saved two break points.

The serve "was the only shot I was really hitting in the first set," said Roddick, who said earlier this week that his serve needed to improve before the US Open. "I was hitting aces, hitting good first serves and they weren't coming back. I was really pleased with my serve tonight."

Roddick had 12 aces in the first set and 18 overall.

Roddick seized control of the second set by breaking Zib at love to take a 2-1 lead.

In the third round Roddick will face either 15th-seeded Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic or fellow US player Paul Goldstein, who reached the second round on Tuesday by beating India's Somdev Dev Varman 6-4, 6-2.

Third-seeded Marat Safin had a much tougher time than Roddick, eventually defeating Jan Hernych 6-2, 2-6, 6-2 to reach the third round.

After a relatively easy first set, the Russian retook control by winning the last four games of the match, including the decisive break that gave him a 3-2 lead.

Also reaching the third round was fifth-seeded Lee Hyung-taik, who beat Russia's Igor Kunitsyn 6-7 (7), 6-3, 6-1. No. 9 seed Gael Monfils of France beat Martin Klizan 7-6 (5), 6-4. Robin Haase of the Netherlands beat 14th-seeded Frenchman Michael Llodra 6-2, 6-7, 7-6.

In a first round match, Tim Henman double-faulted on match point in a third-set tiebreaker to hand US player John Isner a 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (4) win in just his second ATP tour event.

Isner used a serve that routinely topped 209kph to beat the tournament's 2003 champion.

"I might have caught him on an off day," said Isner, who was part of the University of Georgia's US college championship team in May. "Beating somebody of his caliber in a tournament like this has got to be up there. I would put it right behind winning that team championship."

Henman looked like he was in control after a first set in which he lost only four points on his serve. But Isner broke Henman to end the second set and forced Henman to save two match points.

"He's a great server. He came up with two, probably the biggest serves of the match, down 15-40," Isner said. "I served really, really well in the tiebreaker."

Isner will play Germany's Benjamin Becker in the second round.

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