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“For the first time in my career, I don't know what to say”, said an emotional Andy Roddick after his defeat at the hands of Juan Martin Del Potro in what was his final tennis match on tour. Roddick was overwhelmed with emotion and the standing ovation that he received was heart warming to see. Roddick shall be missed as the game hasn't just lost a player today but also a character. In the end someone had to lose, and unfortunately it was Roddick who lost the match 7-6,6-7,2-6,4-6 in over three hours.
The first set set that swung like a pendulum ended the American's way. Roddick had a fantastic start early on, yesterday as moved he looked composed early on yesterday. With a blink of an eye, Roddick was already up 5-2, and looked to be cruising. At this point however, the Argentine woke up and retaliated to break back and level the set at 5-5. As we moved to the tie break, Del Potro was with all the momentum, but it started pouring. As we started today, it was Roddick who came out of the block quick and was the one who took the tie break to 1.
The second set was as we call it, 'the battle of the serve'. Both players continued to serve at a very high level and never gave one another a sniff. Neither player had a break point opportunity in the set as we stayed neck and neck until the tie break. The tie break is pretty much like a penalty shoot out, and it was one little error from the American that let Del Potro take the second set 7-6(4).
The third set was surprisingly lopsided. Roddick seemed to have suddenly lost his focus and intensity giving away two early breaks to the Argentine. The American then held on to serve to take the set to 5-2, but it was too little too late as the Argentine held serve to close the set at 6-2. Del Potro fired 7 aces and 16 winners in that sublime third set.
The fourth set started on even terms, with Roddick getting the first break point opportunity. Unfortunately though, he was unable to capitalize on those two opportunities. The fifth game was the one that was decisive as the Argentine broke serve and then held to take a 4-2 lead. The 2003 champion saved a match point on serve at 5-3, but he just could not hang on as Del Potro held serve closing out the set 6-4.
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