Andy Roddick’s Australian Open finished in a disappointing fashion on the Rod Lave Arena on Wednesday night as he was forced to retire during his clash with Lleyton Hewitt.
Roddick is looking to climb back into the world’s top ten after the second half of his 2011 season was dogged by injury.
The big hitting American was the favourite going into the match and it was Roddick who made his move early in the opening set.
And early break saw the momentum swing in the favour of Roddick as he had Lleyton on the run and Hewitt had no answer to the hit powerful play.
But all that changed at the beginning of the second after a fall it was clear that he had injured himself.
At the next changeover Roddick left the court to receive some treatment but returned to continue the match.
But he struggled with his movement and he neglected to chase down balls - something with Hewitt took full advantage.
The Aussie got the match back on level terms when he took the set 6-3. Roddick did continue to battle in the third set but after losing it 6-4 he called it a day.
Speaking to the New York Times he said: “It’s frustrating; it’s discouraging. You know, your sensible mind says to have a sense of perspective. You still have it pretty good.
“The competitor in you feels terrible and wants to break stuff.”
Hewitt will now face talented Canadian Milos Ranoic tomorrow night as he saw off Philipp Petzschner in four sets.
Petzschner battled back from a set down to level at 1-1 before Raonic picked up the pace in the third set to drop just two games.
In the fourth Raonic had a chance to serve for the match at 5-4 but Petzschner hit back to level at 5-5. But this only delayed the inevitable as Raonic came through 6-4 5-7 6-2 7-5.
Jo Wilfried Tsonga was another winner yesterday as he saw off Ricardo Mello in three sets 7-5 6-4 6-4 to book his place in the third round.
It was a good day for French fans as Gael Monfils also came through his match with Thomaz Bellucci.
After dropping the first set Monfils hit back to win 6-2 0-6 4-6 2-6.
He will now face Mikhail Kukushkin and remains on course for a fourth round clash with Britain’s Andy Murray.
FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw