MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - Robin Soderling upset top-seeded Andy
Roddick 7-6 (6), 6-3 Friday night in the quarterfinals of the
Regions Morgan Keegan Championships, ending the American's bid to
win in consecutive weeks.
Roddick won at San Jose last week and went into the quarterfinal
match 10-1 this season, ranked sixth in the world. Soderling had
been only 7-19 against Top 10 players, a record that included a
victory over No. 7 Richard Gasquet earlier this month.
But the eighth-seeded Swede served up 16 aces and won all but
nine points on his serve and 14 of 18 on his second serve.
Soderling, the runner-up in Rotterdam last week, did not face one
break point and hasn't been broken in three matches.
Roddick said Soderling outplayed him in what he thought would be
his toughest match this week.
"You look at his career record indoors. I think he's over 3-1
in wins to losses. Outdoors, I think he's flirting with .500,"
Roddick said. "I definitely don't think that's coincidence. You
see his toss, it almost brings rain. You add a little bit of wind
to that, he has a huge swing, you add a little bit of wind
conditions to that ... we played indoors tonight. There's no doubt
he's one of the best indoor players."
Soderling will play Czech Radek Stepanek, who beat Chris
Guccione of Australia 7-6 (4), 6-1 Friday night. Swede Jonas
Bjorkman survived a third-set tiebreaker to beat Donald Young 1-6,
6-2, 7-6 (6) and will play Belgian Steve Darcis, a 6-1, 6-0 winner
over Benjamin Becker of Germany.
On the women's side, fourth-seeded Lindsay Davenport beat
qualifier Marina Erakovic of New Zealand 6-0, 6-3 in 57 minutes.
Davenport, who already had beaten Erakovic in a doubles match here
6-0, 6-0, will meet fifth-seeded Olga Govortsova of Belarus on
Saturday night for the Cellular South Cup in the championship.
Govortsova downed Shahar Peer of Israel 6-3, 3-6, 6-4.
Soderling won the tiebreak by serving up an ace, then watched
Roddick hit a poor return.
The Swede had 10 chances to break Roddick, and he finally broke
the American again in the seventh game of the second set. With
Soderling holding the advantage, Roddick double-faulted to fall
behind 4-3 and threw his racket to the court. Soderling broke
Roddick again to win the match, converting on his second match
point when Roddick hit into the net.
"I'm serving great," Soderling said. "Not only am I serving
great, I'm playing great. I played one of my best matches."
Davenport will be going for her fourth title since giving birth
to her son last June. She won at Auckland this year, but has not
won in the United States since New Haven in 2005.
"It's great," Davenport said of reaching the final. "I've
expected to win every match and so to come through and perform is
great. I didn't play well in Australia and the week after, so I'm
excited I got back on the right foot here and hopefully can
continue this momentum through the next few tournaments in the
The 35-year-old Bjorkman said he believes Young, the 18-year-old
from Atlanta, has a bright future once he learns to play tactically
smart. The Swede also had a little advice for the teen not to start
throwing his racket too early in a match, especially after winning
the first set 6-1.
"This game is a mental game. You've just got to go out there
and not show anything," Bjorkman said.
For Young, this quarterfinal was a major learning experience.
He had lost his first three ATP events in the first round before
making his debut here, and he wound up reaching his first career
singles quarterfinals. But he had a chance to make this week even
more memorable and failed.
He had match point on Bjorkman at 5-6 in the tiebreaker only to
watch the veteran come through with a strong service winner.
Bjorkman won the next point with a good backhand after a volley,
and then Young finished it himself by hitting a backhand into the
net before throwing his racket.
"I was definitely thinking about it," Young said of his first
semifinal. "How could you not? ... But I still had to play and win
the point. He wasn't going to give it to me. He took it."
Darcis finished off Becker in 51 minutes to reach his second ATP
semifinal since last summer when he won Amersfoot for his first
singles title. Darcis won five of 10 break points and saved all
four off his serve.