Federer, Roddick set up Miami showdown
By Bill Scott Mar 24, 2012, 22:31 GMT
Miami - Roger Federer and Andy Roddick set up another chapter in a rivalry lasting more than a decade with the Swiss on Saturday winning his 40th match from his past 42 with a 6-2, 7-6 (7-3) schooling of Ryan Harrison in the second round of the Miami Masters.
The American has won two of his 23 matches with Federer, earning one of them in the 2008 Miami quarter-finals.
Federer picked up where he left off as he won his third tournament in a row last weekend in Indian Wells, California, holding off eager teenager Harrison who had boasted that he could somehow make a breakthrough in the match.
It was not to be as the world number three thrashed the American despite a comeback attempt in the second set.
'I felt like I had to win the match like three times at the end, so I was relieved to come through,' Federer said as he started to close the rankings gap on number two Rafael Nadal. 'Beating an American in America is always a big deal because this is here where they usually play their very best.'
Federer briefly lost momentum in the second set when he stopped play upon hearing an 'out' call - which was determined to have come from the stands.
Florida home favourite Roddick, who grew up in Florida but whose game has gone off the boil over the past few injury-plagued seasons, struck a blow with his 6-3, 6-2 win over Gilles Mueller of Luxembourg at the event he won in 2004 and 2010.
'There's been a lot of negativity from me,' Roddick said. 'I don't like playing the way that I have this year, but I feel like something good is coming.
'If I can keep this progress, then hopefully, the next two months will be fine, and I can build.'
Spain's fifth seed, David Ferrer, beat Bernard Tomic 6-4, 6-4 in a bizarre match in which the Australian apparently asked unsuccessfully for his father, John, to be removed from the stands without success, claiming that his parent was 'distracting' him.
The teenager later claimed he was only asking for his father to have some racquets restrung, an odd explanation from the sometimes heir apparent to Lleyton Hewitt.
Gael Monfils, seeded 14th, beat Sergi Bubka 6-4, 6-4 while Albert Ramos put out Spanish 15th seed Feliciano Lopez 6-4, 7-6 (7-5).
Women's second seed Maria Sharapova advanced into the fourth round as she defeated American Sloane Stephens 6-4, 6-2. Sharapova is lifting after losing the Indian Wells final and the Australian Open final to number one Victoria Azarenk, now 24-0 on the season.
China's Li Na advanced over Czech Iveta Benesova 7-5, 6-2. German 12th seed Sabine Lisicki defeated Peng Shuai of China 6-4, 7-5, but Russian Ekaterina Makarova beat Mona Barthel of Germany 6-2, 6-4.
Five-time champion and 10th seed Serena Williams crushed Italian Roberta Vinci 6-2, 6-1.
Williams, playing a WTA event for the first time since the Australian Open and without a title since August in Canada, had to face an 11 am start.
'I'm not a morning person, so it's like you have to wake up early, but honestly, I play my best tennis on early matches,' she said.
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