Roddick draws on crowd's support to brush aside Beck

Andy Roddick has become something of a Wimbledon fixture over the last decade and fans know exactly what they are going to get when they pay to watch the American No 8 seed.

Yesterday, the 28-year-old began his 11th successive assault on the tournament with only an outside chance of matching his three runner-up finishes in 2004, 2005 and 2009 but he was as committed as on his debut as he battered his way past German Andreas Beck 6-4, 7-6, 6-3.

As a brash, young, cap-wearing American, the Wimbledon crowd was not quick to warm to him in his early years but three things British fans love are an underdog, a trier and a good-spirited loser. Despite his 2003 US Open title and former No 1 ranking, they soon saw all three in Roddick.

Despite the solid support he received on Court One, Roddick said he was still unsure of how he fitted into the Wimbledon picture. "I think a lot changes over the course of 10 or 11 years but it's tough for me to look at my relationship with the fans here objectively," he said. "I know from my end I certainly enjoy it but I'm not going to speak for them, though they've always been great to me."

Three times he got to the final here and three times he found Roger Federer standing in his way. Twice he was unable to make much impression on the Swiss maestro, who had also beaten him in the 2003 semi-finals, but in 2009 he came agonisingly close before eventually going down 16-14 in the fifth set of a classic encounter.

Even though he had beaten Andy Murray in the semis, that tough final defeat assured him a place in the Wimbledon fans' hearts and he had terrific backing during his awkward opening match against his 156th-ranked opponent.

Roddick wasted little time in unloading his 130mph serves, punchy double-handed backhands and no-holds-barred forehands but his radar was a touch off and the German matched him all the way until the American broke in the tenth game to take the first set.

It was solid, if unspectacular entertainment and the murmuring members found time to tut and chunter as the umpire called "net" instead of "let" on a succession of let services.

The second set was equally tight, going to a tiebreak that turned on a successful Roddick appeal against a baseline "out" call.

Thirty years ago John McEnroe was labelled a brat for daring to challenge a line call but now, with appeals enshrined as part of the game, his compatriot was giving a rousing ovation when the replay showed he was right.

Once the tiebreak went his way, Roddick gritted his teeth and pumped his fist as he, his opponent and most of the watching crowd knew that the battle was over and he duly eased through the third set after notching an early break.

"He certainly had an obvious game plan and executed it for most of the day," Roddick said of Beck. "He wasn't going to rally much. He was just going to take his shots and go really aggressive and it worked most of the day.

"Normally when you have that mindset, you can count on someone making errors in bunches. Luckily he made two when he was up in that breaker." Roddick now plays Romania's Victor Hanescu.

News
The surrealist comedian at the Q Awards in 2010
people
Life and Style
Six of the 76 Goats' cheese samples contained a significant amount of sheep's cheese
food + drink
News
Russell Brand arriving for the book launch in East London
peopleRussell Brand cancels his book launch debate due to concerns about the make-up of the panel
Arts and Entertainment
Contestants during this summer's Celebrity Big Brother grand finale
tvBroadcaster attempts to change its image following sale to US
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Julianne Moore and Ellen Page are starring together in civil rights drama Freeheld
film
Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Dales attempts to sell British Breeze in the luxury scent task
tvReview: 'Apprentice' candidates on the verge of tears as they were ejected from the boardroom
Voices
New look: Zellweger at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
voicesRenée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity, says Amanda Hess
Arts and Entertainment
film

Marvel has released the first teaser trailer a week early after it leaked online

Extras
indybest
Life and Style
CHARGE BOOSTER: Aeroplane mode doesn't sound very exciting, but it can be a (phone) hacker's friend. Turning on the option while charging your mobile will increase the speed at which your phone battery charges
techNew book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone
Sport
Christiano Ronaldo enjoys his opening goal
champions leagueLiverpool 0 Real Madrid 3: Ronaldo and Benzema run Reds ragged to avenge thrashing from their last visit to Anfield
Arts and Entertainment
Awesome foursome: Sam Smith shows off his awards
music22-year-old confirms he is 2014’s breakout British music success
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Nicholas Serota has been a feature in the Power 100 top ten since its 2002 launch
art
News
Call me Superman: one of many unusual names chosen by Chinese students
newsChinese state TV offers advice for citizens picking a Western moniker
News
Wilko Johnson is currently on his farewell tour
people
News
Let’s pretend: KidZania in Tokyo
educationKidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day
News
i100
Voices
'Irritatingly Disneyfied': fashion vlogger Zoella
voicesVicky Chandler: Zoella shows us that feminism can come in all forms
Life and Style
health
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

Liverpool v Real Madrid

Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?