Ninth seed Andy Roddick is ousted in four sets by Janko Tipsarevic at U.S. Open
Thursday, September 2, 2010; 12:57 AM
FLUSHING MEADOWS, N.Y. - Another night session at the U.S. Open's Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Another foot fault called against the top American at a critical juncture.
Another belligerent reaction - although Andy Roddick's response to the call that negated the ace he sorely needed, while mocking and sarcastic, was nowhere near as abusive as Serena Williams's outburst on the same court a year ago.
Williams was defaulted on the spot for threatening the lineswoman involved. Roddick was allowed to play on Wednesday after badgering the lineswoman responsible - not because she erred in the call but because she misspoke when he demanded to know which foot had touched the baseline.
Either way, the outcome was the same.
Roddick, the country's best hope of reclaiming the U.S. Open men's title, was ushered out of the tournament he won in 2003 shortly before midnight, falling to unseeded Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia, 3-6, 7-5, 6-3, 7-6 (7-4).
Coming in just the second round, the defeat was a bitter disappointment and major setback for Roddick, 28, who each year pours more effort into preparing for the U.S. Open than any other event, mindful that his opportunities to win it again are dwindling.
Roddick arrived in New York at a considerable disadvantage this year, his energy sapped from a bout of mononucleosis that wasn't diagnosed until early August, following his third-round loss at Washington's Legg Mason Tennis Classic.
Against Tipsarevic, a persistent but hardly physically imposing player, Roddick won the opening set fairly easily but grew increasingly passive, playing more defensive than offensive tennis, in the second set.
And the near capacity crowd at Ashe, normally electric when an American is in action, did little to rally the favorite, seemingly taking Roddick's victory for granted even as Tipsarevic blasted one backhand winner after another past him.
After dropping the second set, Roddick compounded his woes in the third set and was clearly disgusted with himself, serving to stay in the set at 2-5, when a lineswoman called him for a foot fault - a transgression Roddick rarely commits.
He immediately challenged her, demanding to know which foot hit the line.