Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
French Open: Andy Roddick loses in first round
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Paris • Easy to understand why Andy Roddick never enjoyed playing on red clay all that much.

First and foremost, the footing is tricky as can be. The soft courts take his booming serves and forehands down a notch, too. Put simply, his game is built for hard or grass courts. As if that weren't enough, he arrived at this French Open having played only 16 matches in a season interrupted by injuries to his right hamstring and right ankle.

If Roddick was tempted to sit out Roland Garros altogether — or tempted to use his health or rust as an excuse for playing poorly — he did not. The 26th-seeded American, once ranked No. 1 and once a Grand Slam champion, gave it a shot and came up short Sunday, exiting in a major tournament's opening round for the first time since 2007, and at the same venue.

His 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 loss to 88th-ranked Nicolas Mahut at the French Open dropped Roddick's record to 7-10 this season, 0-4 on clay. Of the seven previous major title winners in action on Day 1 in Paris, including Venus Williams in her first Grand Slam match since revealing in August she was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, only Roddick was beaten.

"Wasn't playing really well. I move just horrendously out here. My first step is just so bad on this stuff," Roddick said. "I feel like I'm always shuffling or hopping or not stopping or something."

Like Roddick, and for much the same reasons, Williams is not nearly as comfortable on clay as faster surfaces.

She's also dealing with the difficult process of learning to live with Sjogren's syndrome, a condition that can cause fatigue and joint pain. But the 31-year-old Williams, a seven-time major champion, overcame a slow start Sunday to beat 19-year-old Paula Ormaechea of Argentina 4-6, 6-1, 6-3.

"A lot of it, I have to figure it out. It's physical and emotional and all kinds of different things. Mental," Williams said of her medical condition. "It's a big accomplishment for me to be here right now."

She looked glum on court, not even smiling after most of her 41 winners (Ormaechea only had 15). But she laughed frequently during her news conference, such as when she talked about what she's been going through as "definitely an adventure and journey; it's life happening."

The other past major champions who won Sunday were Juan Martin del Potro, Juan Carlos Ferrero, Sam Stosur, Ana Ivanovic and Svetlana Kuznetsova. Monday's schedule includes Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Victoria Azarenka and Li Na. —

At a glance

Men's seeded winners • No. 5 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, No. 9 Juan Martin Del Potro, No. 14 Fernando Verdasco, No. 18 Stanislas Wawrinka, No. 21 Marin Cilic.

Men's seeded losers • No. 26 Andy Roddick, No. 30 Jurgen Melzer.

Women's seeded winners • No. 6 Sam Stosur, No. 10 Angelique Kerber, No. 13 Ana Ivanovic, No. 20 Lucie Safarova, No. 21 Sara Errani, No. 26 Svetlana Kuznetsova.

Women's seeded losers • None.

French Open • Venus wins first Grand Slam match since diagnosis.
Article Tools

 Print Friendly
 
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Login to the Electronic Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.