The legendary tournament at Wimbledon has many clubs in which the participants become eligible members depending on their finish in the tournament. If a player reaches the quarterfinal they become a part of the Last Eight Club, if they win they become an honorary member of the All England Club.
Too bad for American Andy Roddick that there is no club for losing in the final. Roddick would be comfortably in that club after losing in 2004, 2005, and most recently in 2009. Last year’s final was as instant classic as he and then world No. 1 Roger Federer went 5-7, 7-6 (6), 7-6 (5), 3-6, 16-14. Roddick has lost all three times in the final to Federer.
The Austin, Texas native is back healthy this year, and is looking to achieve his first Wimbledon victory. He is trying to avoid the club that contains tennis greats Ken Rosewall, Ivan Lendl, and Patrick Rafter. Thanks to last year’s final, Roddick believes that crowd sentiment will be more in his favor than ever before.
“I think a lot maybe changed after Wimbledon last year,” Roddick said. “I certainly think the sentiment is maybe a little bit different now.”
Now that Federer has fallen from the No. 1 spot, Roddick may be poised to pounce on the grass at Wimbledon. After a disappointing third-round exit at the French Open, Roddick has had plenty of time to prepare for the All England Club. Both Federer and world No. 1 Rafael Nadal had early exits from their Wimbledon warm-ups.
Roddick appeared on the “Friday Night with Jonathan Ross” show, a British equivalent of Jey Leno, or David Letterman. Ross exhibited the type of support Roddick will feel at Wimbledon from the English tennis fans.
“I know we’ve got Andy Murray, but I’d like to see you win Wimbledon this year, I really would, because I think you so deserved it last year,” the host told Roddick. ”And Federer’s won it — how many times? Stop showing off, Swiss guy. Let someone else have a look in.”
The American was not worried by his straight sets loss Israli Dudi Sela at the Queen’s Club tournament recently. He knows the loss does not reflect on his current form, and his history on grass.
“A match at Queen’s isn’t going to ruin what I’ve done on this surface for the last eight years and how I’ve started off this year,” said Roddick.
Andy has been fielding all types of suggestions that might help him get over the hump at Wimbledon. Last year, he shared the story of his mailman telling him that he didn’t change his sweaty shirt enough during the match.
“I haven’t seen my mailman since,” Roddick told reporters. “He might have quit or been moved to another round after I made that knowledge public.”
Tennis sportsbooks have set Roddick as one of the favorites to win the 2010 Wimbledon tournament at 12/1. Andy is the heavy favorite in his first match on Monday against Rajeev Ram at -5000. Federer is again the favorite to win at 11/8.