- Title: USA: ANDY RODDICK TALKS ABOUT HIS DEFEAT IN THE US. OPEN TENNIS TOURNAMENT
- Date: 5th September 2001
- Summary: NEW YORK, USA (September 6, 2001) 1. SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) YEVGENY KAFELNIKOV SAYS: "At our level a match can turn so quickly ". 2. SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) GUSTAVO KUERTEN SAYS: "I didn't have the energy to step up andplay my best." 3. SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) ANDY RODDICK SAYS: "It is unfortunate it ended the way it did. It is pretty disheartening when something like this (the disputed line call) happens. 4. SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) LLEYTON HEWITT SAYS: "I don't think anyone can blame him (Roddick) for not being happy. I thought the ball was out." Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Embargoed: 20th September 2001 13:00
- Location: NEW YORK, NEW YORK, USA
- Country: USA
- Reuters ID: LVA9GIOMNEM1WZAGQET2VTFC5CB2
- Story Text: Andy Roddick, America's great tennis hope, exploded
over an umpire's call in the early hours of Friday morning and
his outburst may have cost him a berth in the semifinals of
the U.S. Open.
Fourth seed Lleyton Hewitt of Australia eventually
defeated the 18th-seeded American 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 6-4 3-6 6-4,
taking the final game after the umpire overruled a line call.
"I thought it was a very good match," Roddick, 19, said.
"Both of us fought hard. It's unfortunate that I blew up and
it ended the way it did.
"It's pretty disheartening when you fight for that long
and something like that happens. You just feel like someone
reaches inside you and just takes something."
After the hard-hitting American failed to convert two
break point opportunities in the ninth game of the set, he
served in the next game in the likelihood that the match would
go into a fifth-set tiebreaker.
But on the first point of the 10th game, chair umpire
Jorge Dias of Portugal overruled a call on a Roddick shot to
the left sideline, calling "out" a ball that television
replays could not prove definitively as having missed or just
grazed the line.
"How can you overrule the far side of the court? What is
wrong with you?" Roddick asked the impassive Dias. "It was
right on the line. Are you an absolute moron?"
Asked later if he would retract "absolute moron", Roddick
said: "I'm not going to take anything back. I said it. I meant
it at the time."
He added: "I'm definitely disappointed in myself for
letting it do that to me. But, at the same time, I had pretty
darn good reason for it. Maybe the more experienced I get,
I'll learn to handle that.
"But that's a tough one to handle. That's not right in
front of him. That's not a ball he can say, and this is the
rule of umpires, 'I saw it clearly, 100 percent, no doubt in
my mind, out.'
After the call, Roddick won two points but also committed
a couple of errors and wound up being broken for the match.
Asked if the call had rattled him, Roddick said: "Of
He admitted he did not remember what his approach was to
the points after the call.
"I don't even remember anything after that. I just told
myself to stick to my guns, try to keep playing. But, you
know, I really needed to push it out of my mind and it wasn't
all the way gone."
Did he think he was robbed? "Yeah, I do. Who is to say I
would have won, anyways? But when you start off a game
love-15, it puts that much pressure on you. I'll leave it at
Roddick said he had never been so unhinged on a tennis
court before. "Not for anything related to tennis," he said.
"Not like that ballistic."
Roddick, last year's U.S. Open junior champion, had
reached his first Grand Slam quarter-final.
"It's been a great run," he said. "I've had so much fun
out here this weekend. A part of me is just dying inside, but
a part of me is, 'OK, I can relax now.' Everything has been
pretty overwhelming for me in the last year."
Gustavo Kuerten's Brazilian samba bash was brought to an
abrupt end at the U.S. Open championships on Thursday but the
world number one said his party was far from over.
"This was maybe the first match I didn't play well for
three or four months," said Kuerten, who lost his
quarter-final match 6-4 6-0 6-3 to seventh seed Yevgeny
"If you're comfortable with losing, it's not fine,"
Kuerten said. "I feel disappointed and I feel frustrated but
also maybe tonight I can have a good dinner, drink one beer,
go out. If I win, I wouldn't have this chance."
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