Skip to main content

Roddick serves up semifinal upset with victory over Nadal

Big-serving Andy Roddick is seeking to repeat his 2004 triumph in the Miami tournament.
Big-serving Andy Roddick is seeking to repeat his 2004 triumph in the Miami tournament.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Andy Roddick reaches final in Miami, coming from behind to beat fourth seed Rafael Nadal
  • American sixth seed triumphs 4-6 6-3 6-3 as he seeks to follow up title from 2004
  • He will face Tomas Berdych in Sunday's final after Czech upset fifth seed Robin Soderling
  • The 16th seed followed up his fourth-round triumph over world No. 1 Roger Federer

(CNN) -- American sixth seed Andy Roddick denied Rafael Nadal a third final appearance at the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami after another sensational serving performance on Friday.

Roddick, the tournament's 2004 champion, will face Tomas Berdych in Sunday's title match after coming from behind to defeat Spanish fourth seed Nadal 4-6 6-3 6-3 in the semis at Key Biscayne.

He has won an incredible 62 of his last 64 service games, reaching the final of two successive Masters 1000 events for the first time since 2003, when he went on to win the U.S. Open.

Roddick, beaten in the Indian Wells title match by Ivan Ljubicic two weeks ago, broke Nadal's serve at 4-3 up in the second set with three forehand winners and then held to love to level the match.

I took a lot of risk in the last two sets. My comfort zone of moving the ball around doesn't work against Rafa
--Andy Roddick
RELATED TOPICS

He again broke his fellow former world No. 1 in the third game of the decider and held serve to claim his first win in the last four meetings between the two.

"I knew I had to be more aggressive. My heavy forehand doesn't work against him, so I had to hit it flatter, which is higher risk. I took really, really ridiculous cuts at a lot of forehands," Roddick told the ATP Tour Web site.

"I took a lot of risk there in the last two sets. My comfort zone of moving the ball around and maybe chipping it around a little bit doesn't work against Rafa. I had to try to come up with something that at least took him out of his comfort zone a little bit, and it paid off."

Nadal was not too disheartened, having reached the semifinals in his two outings since suffering a knee injury at the Australian Open in January.

"Two semifinals in a row, first two Masters 1000 of the season for me is positive," Nadal said. "Positive American hardcourt season, first part. So, yeah, happy for that."

Berdych continued his giantkilling run as he followed up his victories over world No. 1 Roger Federer and 10th seed Fernando Verdasco by crushing Swedish fifth seed Robin Soderling 6-2 6-2.

The Czech, seeded 16th, has gone one better than his last-four achievement in Miami last year as he qualified for only his second Masters final.

"In all my matches with Robin in the past I've been too defensive. If you give him time to hit the ball hard it's really tough," Berdych said. "I wanted to play more aggressive, but without making mistakes."