Andy Roddick hit a record 155-mph serve in his 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 win over Vladimir Voltchkov yesterday to help the United States to a 2-0 lead over Belarus in the Davis Cup semifinals in Charleston, S.C.
Olympic silver medalist Mardy Fish defeated Max Mirnyi in the second singles match, 7-5, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3.
Roddick's serve in the final game of the match eclipsed his own record of 153 mph set at the Queen's Club tournament in England in June. Even with the record speed, Voltchkov managed to get his racket on the ball but was unable to return it.
The crowd at the Family Circle Tennis Center stood and cheered when the record speed of the serve was shown.
"I hit a good one. That's about it," Roddick said. "I think it's fun for the fans. To me it's still a point. It's something I'll be able to tell people about one day. But I'm happier with the win -- serving well overall."
Earlier in the match with Voltchkov, who is ranked 162nd in the world, Roddick had serves of 151 and 152 mph.
"I know I serve better than most guys on tour," Roddick said. "I'm not so much worried about intimidating someone as I am about beating someone."
Roddick had 17 aces in the match.
"I didn't get down 0-30. I think the closest was 30-30," he said. "I put myself in a position to serve well by not putting myself under pressure a lot."
And it was too much for Voltchkov.
"When you play against the top players, the first thing you want to try to do is get into a fight where it doesn't matter anymore who's number one or who's number 150," Voltchkov said. "Unfortunately, I had a slow start and, all credit to Andy, the way he started -- huge serves -- it was just tough to catch up."
The doubles match in the best-of-five semifinals is today, followed by the reverse singles tomorrow.
Americans Bob and Mike Bryan are scheduled to play Mirnyi and Alexander Skrypko.
In the other semifinal, France led Spain 1-0 in Alicante, Spain. Paul-Henri Mathieu upset sixth-ranked Carlos Moya, 6-3, 3-6, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3. Spain's Juan Carlos Ferrero was leading Fabrice Santoro, 6-3, 6-1, 1-6, when play was stopped because of darkness. Spain, the champion in 2000, is trying to reach the final for third time in five years.
In World Group playoffs, it was Australia 2, Morocco 0; Slovakia 1, Germany 1; Romania 2, Canada 0; Russia 2, Thailand 0; and Croatia 2, Belgium 0.
-- From News Services