F**k off, Roma.
Roddick leaves Roma in a rage
When the announcement came Sunday that Americans Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish had defaulted their doubles final in Rome to countrymen John Isner and Sam Querrey, the red flags went up.
The official reason was an issue with Roddick’s shoulder.
Not that an injury wasn’t possible, but the logistics of the situation were that Roddick had to dash to Nice, where he’s the No. 4 seed in the small ATP Tour event there this week.
And although Roddick wasn’t scheduled Monday (indeed may not be until Wednesday), the other three Americans did not have the luxury of time.
All needed to be in Dusseldorf, Germany toot sweet to play in the World Team Cup, with Isner scheduled at 1 p.m. and Querrey about 3 p.m. vs. Robin Soderling on Monday.
But according to the esteemed Neil Harman of Times of London, (the Times has a paywall, but it’s well worth it during this season for Harman’s pieces alone) Roddick is furious with the ATP for not finding the shoulder injury enough to be flexible on the prize money rules for withdrawals.
The default will cost Roddick and Fish €31,400 (plus the doubles ranking points, which probably don’t matter all that much to them).
Harman writes that Roddick had an ultrasound on his right shoulder, which showed a buildup of fluid that requires a few days’ rest.
The American, the way Harman tells it, kind of lost his mind as only Righteous Andy can do. He even wanted to call a press conference to make a huge stink about it.
Instead, he had Harman be there as a witness while he reamed out the ATP folks, who stood firm on a rule the Tour reportedly adopted because doubles specialists were blowing off matches to go and play lucrative league matches.
As Harman points out, the default allowed the other three Americans to catch the one and only flight from Rome to Düsseldorf Sunday night. Harman also said the organizers there were threatening sanctions if the Americans didn’t make it in time for their matches Monday.
So, really, there certainly seems to be some grey area there.
It’s not unlike Roddick to go off on something if he feels it’s wrong on principle – i.e. they didn’t just take him on faith that the shoulder wouldn’t allow him to play.
You’d think it isn’t the money. He’s made plenty, and his friend Mardy isn’t hurting either. But even rich guys don’t like to give any of it away if they don’t have to.
But rules are rules. And in this case they’re pretty clear. Roddick would have to point out other situations where players in similar fixes got a mulligan to give his argument much weight.
As well, if you took an ultrasound of Roddick’s shoulder at any time during the season (or most other big servers), it’s likely you’d find some fluid buildup there. He didn’t exactly play a ton of tennis during the clay-court season.
Heck, if you took an ultrasound of your esteemed Open Court servant’s shoulder, they’d probably find fluid (and a whole bunch of other things, too).