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Page last updated at 19:06 GMT, Wednesday, 1 July 2009 20:06 UK

Roddick win sets up Murray clash

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Date: 22 June - 5 July
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Andy Roddick

Highlights - Roddick sees off Hewitt

By Chris Bevan
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

Two-time Wimbledon runner-up Andy Roddick came through a marathon encounter with Lleyton Hewitt to set up a semi-final meeting with Andy Murray.

Roddick, who lost to Roger Federer in the final in 2004 and 2005, served well to take the first set but Hewitt took a dramatic second-set tie-break to level.

A leg injury to Hewitt let Roddick run away with the third-set tie-break.

But the Australian hit back to force a decider before Roddick came through to win 6-3 6-7 (10-12) 7-6 (7-1) 5-7 6-4.

It was a thrilling clash that lasted three hours 50 minutes and left both players exhausted - something that will only help Murray, who will face Roddick on Friday for a place in the final.

"I am super-relieved just coming off court," Roddick told BBC Sport. "I have not been in the Grand Slam picture much the last couple of years but am now in my second of the year so far so I am really happy.

"There is a lot of respect between me and Lleyton. We used to get into it a bit when we were younger but we earned each other's respect and now we are just a couple of ordinary dudes. We have maybe grown up a little bit."

Asked how tired he was, Roddick added: "I am ready to go and excited. There is no time to be tired."

606: DEBATE
purescousemachine

Hewitt, like Roddick, was once the world number one but is down at number 56 despite a recent revival in form.

To reach the quarter-final, the 2002 champion had knocked out fifth seed Juan Martin del Potro before coming back from two sets down to beat Radek Stepanek on Monday.

Although he was disappointed not to reach the semi-finals, Hewitt admitted that overall he had enjoyed a good tournament.

"There are a lot of positives to take out of it like the guys I have beaten, especially Del Potro, the way I went out there and took it to him and played great tennis over three sets against a worthy opponent," he said.

"Andy is one of the best grass-court players out there and has been to a couple of Wimbledon finals. It is not a bad loss but I would have liked to have snuck through.

"We were both giving everything we had out there and I don't think either of us left anything in the locker-room."

He made another slow start here and was broken after double-faulting twice in his first service game.

The 28-year-old quickly improved but could not make any inroads into Roddick's thumping serve and the American took the first set in just 27 minutes.

Things were a lot closer in the second, which was settled by an epic tie-break that lasted 22 points.

Roddick led 5-2 and had three set-points, but could not convert any of them, while Hewitt had seen two of his own come and go before finally levelling the match when his opponent fired a forehand long.

The third set also went to a tie-break but this time Roddick dominated, dropping only one point as Hewitt crumbled.

Lleyton Hewitt's supporters - the Fanatics
Not even Hewitt's supporters - the Fanatics - could help him triumph

That looked like the beginning of the end for the Australian, who seemed to be restricted by an injury to his left leg as he was broken feebly at the start of the fourth set.

But, roared on by some fervent support, he somehow fought back to level before clinching the set when Roddick sent a backhand sailing into the tramlines.

Things were just as tense in the deciding set but the sixth seed struck at the right moment, forcing more errors out of Hewitt to move 5-4 up.

Serving for the match, Roddick looked drained and, at 30-all, Hewitt fought on.

But the American's big serve brought him to match-point and he completed his victory when a Hewitt volley flew long.

Roddick added: "I felt fine out there physically although I am sure I will wake up a little bit sore tomorrow but that is only to be expected.

"It wasn't short on drama and it was tough from a mental standpoint. There were lots of ebbs and flows and I am happy to be on the good side of it.

"The fifth set was a dogfight and I came up with probably the best half-volley I have hit in my life to save a break point.

"There is a mixture of happiness and relief in your mind at the end of a match like that.

"You are trying to stay the course for four hours constantly figuring out what going to do with your mind constantly racing."

Looking ahead to his semi-final against Murray, he added: "Andy's been playing great and he has certainly come into his own as a player. I am going to go out and play and with my serve I give myself a chance in any match."



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Order of play
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Results
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Men's singles draw
26 Aug 11 |  Tennis


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