Roddick: One-Slam wonder? Well, that's one more than most
I was pretty happy with everything in my match (Wednesday). I played clean, a lot better than my first round. I was sticking returns, hit 15 aces and won 93% of my first serves. Although I was on Centre Court, I didn't want to play under the retractable roof. I've heard it makes the conditions a little slower. The air is more humid, and the balls get a little bit bigger and don't travel as fast. I was happy when they said they were going to open the roof before my match since the day started with rain and it was closed.
On the other hand, it was a good feeling knowing I was guaranteed to play. I was here Monday ready to play all day. My match got canceled late. Played Tuesday, played Wednesday. I didn't want to get canceled (Wednesday) and wake up with that mentality of having to play for five consecutive days. So it was a little bit of a relief knowing that I was going to get my match in no matter what.
Actually, I was surprised I was scheduled on Centre Court with (Rafael) Nadal and (Andy) Murray on the docket. My camp and I always try to predict where and what time I'm going to play. We were 0-fer. No one got that one. We normally have a pretty good idea. Later in the day is better for U.S. TV (since we are five hours ahead of ET) and I'm behind Murray and Nadal on my side of the draw pecking-order wise. You can get a pretty good gauge on where you're going to be but we were wrong on this one. I can't predict where I'll be Friday because I haven't seen all the matchups yet.
It's my 11th Wimbledon and a lot has changed and much hasn't. There is new player dining area, new courts like No. 2 last year and this year the newly built No. 3. Court 1 was new when I first arrived here. The thing that's cool is that a lot of changed but they're still able to make it feel like the old place. They do a great job of incorporating the new with tradition.
My coach Larry Stefanki and I have been together a few years now, too. It's always a challenge to keep it fresh, but we haven't tried to do anything consciously about that. I have a lot of faith in his opinion on tennis. He's seen a lot. He's coached every different style from (Tim) Henman to (Marcelo) Rios to (John) McEnroe. He's meticulous as far as notes and remembering matches. He literally has notes from every match I've ever played, certain points, tendencies, etc. He's just well studied. I respect that.
I don't care when people use the term "one-Slam wonder" with me. (Actually, nearly half of the major winners in the Open era — 24 of 51 — fit that category). People say it as a bad thing. The people who say it I swear don't have a Grand Slam title. I think the term "wonder" suggests you have won one and gone away. I've played in five Grand Slam finals. I haven't gone anywhere. I've been here the last decade. You'd better be pretty good if you're going to throw that term around nonchalantly.
But I do wonder about the lack of statistical awareness in our sport. I'd like to see us get fired up in tennis about other numbers besides the Slams — 500 homers in baseball, things like that. Or a certain number of match wins that was magical or more celebrated. I wish we had those hallowed marks. We have one mark, which is tough. It would be like judging Karl Malone on nothing but one stat.
I have a day off before my next match. I'll probably have a light hit of 30-45 minutes. My wife Brooklyn wants to go to a movie in the afternoon. She's been eager to take me to this movie Bridesmaids for a while. I think she's already seen it three times.
Next up is Feliciano Lopez. I've never lost to him (7-0), but we've had some really close matches. Very tough. Lefty. Chips the ball around, likes to volley. His game is almost tailor-made for grass. He likes playing on the surface as much as I do. He's been to the quarterfinals here a couple times and we just played at Queens in the first round. I was down a break in the third and won.