The American improves to 2-15 against the World No. 1
KEY BISCAYNE: Andy Roddick ended a streak of 11 consecutive losses to Roger Federer on Thursday at the Sony Ericsson Open. Dominating with his serve, Roddick took advantage of Federer’s suddenly shaky play in the final set to win 7-6(4), 4-6, 6-3 in the quarterfinals.
“I came in knowing that nobody has beaten me 12 times in a row,” Roddick told the delighted capacity crowd afterward. “So I had that on my side.”
In the women’s semifinals, Serena Williams overcame a slow start to outlast Svetlana Kuznetsova 3-6, 7-5, 6-3. Williams needs one more win for her fifth Key Biscayne title and second in a row.
Roddick impoved to 2-15 against Federer, who came into the tournament hoping to quell talk that his game is in decline. Slowed by mononucleosis early in the year, the top-ranked Federer has yet to reach a final in 2008, making this his worst start since 2000.
“I am just sort of disappointed not to see my name playing in the finals,” Federer said. “I think I have the game to obviously be there.”
Roddick’s opponent in the semifinals on Friday night will be No. 4 Nikolay Davydenko, who beat unseeded Janko Tipsarevic 6-2, 6-1. Roddick was at his best against the top-ranked Federer, especially down the stretch.
Roddick fell behind love-30 serving at 3-3 in the final set, then won the next 11 points, five of them thanks to unforced errors by Federer.
Twice during the stretch Federer shanked shots.
“I figure I was due,” Roddick said. “He hadn’t missed a ball in a crucial moment for about six years against me. I figured the law of statistics had to come my way eventually.”
Federer was broken for the only time at love to fall behind 5-3, losing the only break point he faced in the match. Roddick closed out the victory with a 140-mph service winner.
That helped him end a streak of 10 consecutive sets lost against Federer.
Bhupathi & Knowles in final
In the doubles, fourth seeds Mahesh Bhupathi and Mark Knowles saved three match points en route to a thrilling win over Martin Damm and Pavel Vizner that has set them up against top seeds Bob and Mike Bryan in the final. Bhupathi and Knowles beat the sixth-seeded Czech duo 7-6(5), 4-6, 11-9 to secure their fourth consecutive match tie-break victory, after saving three matchpoints.
The results: Men: Quarterfinals: Andy Roddick bt Roger Federer 7-6(4), 4-6, 6-3; Nikolay Davydenko bt Janko Tipsarevic 6-2, 6-1. Doubles: Semifinals: Mahesh Bhupathi & Mark Knowles bt Martin Damm & Pavel Vizner 7-6(5), 4-6, 11-9.
Women: Semifinals: Serena Williams bt Svetlana Kuznetsova 3-6, 7-5, 6-3; Jelena Jankovic bt Vera Zvonareva 6-1, 6-4. — Agencies