An Unlucky Night for Americans in the Capital City

Written By: achangeofends - Aug• 06•10

At the beginning of last night, there were sixteen men still in contention for the DC title. Four of them were American. Three of our guys had excellent chances of not only winning their matches, but going all the way at the tournament. Andy Roddick was the second seed and has wont he tournament 3 times before. John Isner recently made the final of the Atlanta tournament and was vaulted into stardom after winning the longest match in history at Wimbledon earlier this year. He lost the Atlanta final to man-of-the-moment, Mardy Fish, who was on an 11 match winning streak after taking home the title at both Newport and Atlanta and beating Viktor Troicki in his first match at Legg Mason. I think you all know where this is going. Today there are eight guys left and not a single one is American. Roddick lost to Gilles Simon, John Isner to Xavier Malisse, Mardy Fish to Marin Cilic, and qualifier Ryan Sweeting lost to Fernando Verdasco. This was all compounded by the second round loss of LA champion, Sam Querrey, who fell to Janko Tipsarevic.

Isner lost to Malisse in a third set tie breaker. This result was surprising considering Isner’s consistency with breakers. Although it seems John may be facing some concerns over a shoulder injury, which caused him to pull out of doubles with Sam Querrey. Sweeting’s defeat was no surprise. In terms of Mardy Fish, there’s been a lot of hype lately. I saw him win the title in Newport a few weeks ago and the guy is clearly in the best shape of his life. He may have been ousted by Marin Cilic last night, but no matter, he’s already won two title this summer alone. He deserves a little break anyway.

The big surprise of the night was Any Roddick’s loss to Gilles Simon. I think Andy Roddick’s always a bit of a favorite at Legg Mason. He’s won the tournament 3 times and made the final last year before losing to Juan Martin del Potro, the eventual US Open champ. So, it’s surprising that he lost, period, particularly in just his second match. The even bigger surprise was the winner, Gilles Simon, who has recently returned to the tour after battling a knee injury that kept him out for most of the clay season. Had this been early 2009, this defeat would not have been all that shocking. Gilles Simon was ranked 6th in the world and Andy Roddick hadn’t yet reached the most heartbreaking Wimbledon final I’ve seen. For Gilles, I think a solid performane in Washington would help bring some of the old confidence back into his game. He’s only 25, so he could clearly get back up there with the top players. I’m thinking probably the top 20. He’s not a huge guy, only 5’11”, so I’m not sure I’m convinced we’ll be seeing him back in the top 10 real soon. Tennis has a whole has recently shifted to a new species of giants and I think it’s going to keep getting more difficult for the normal sized players to compete at the highest level. I really like Gilles so hopefully his comeback goes as planned and we’ll see some good results at the US Open.

My big concern out of this mass exodus of Americans is for Andy Roddick. According to Brad Gilbert’s twitter, Andy will fall out of the top 10 after this loss. this will be a big blow to Andy’s confidence going into the rest of the hardcourt warm ups for the US Open. Roddick will be 28 in a few weeks and is fast approaching a time where he will need a miracle to win another Grand Slam. If you’ve read the archives, you’ll know that this is not a critique of Roddick. I am a huge fan of Andy and want nothing more than to see him win one of the big four. Andy did win the Miami Masters this year and made the final at Indian Wells so hopefully the rest of the return to hardcourts will go well for him, starting this week in Toronto.

Speaking of Andy Roddick, whoever is sending him nasty tweets needs to stop. I’m tired of hearing players are quitting twitter because people are being mean to them. I understand not everyone is a fan, but it is just stupid to tell a celebrity you don’t like them. No one cares. Again, you can follow me on twitter by clicking the “Follow Me” button on the right hand side of the page. I’ll try to keep it updated this weekend while watching the quallies in Toronto, but no guarantees as roaming charges on my blackberry may be a bit pricey from Canada.

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