I am not laughing or crying yet but I am curious to know what Team Roddick has in mind with all of this.
Roddick Enters Delray Beach Qualifying Draw
By Tennis Week
The Delray Beach draw has grown even deeper with the addition of another former World No. 1. Third-ranked Andy Roddick, who was bounced out of the Australian Open in the fourth round by Cyprus' sensation Marcos Baghdatis will try to bounce back this weekend when he competes in the qualifying draw for the Delray Beach International Tennis Championships.
The tournament — which already features former No. 1 Andre Agassi, James Blake, Robby Ginepri, Tommy Haas, defending champion Xavier Malisse and Mardy Fish in its main draw — did not have a wild card available for Roddick, so he will play qualifying this weekend to earn a spot in the main draw.
"It's true. We will be announcing it shortly," a tournament spokesperson told Tennis Week today.
Delray Beach officials awarded their three wild cards to Agassi, Fish and Sargis Sargsian, who announced his retirement from tournament tennis last year, but is returning to play the ITC.
It will be Roddick's first qualifying appearance since the fall of 2000 when at age 18 he qualified for a Challenger in Austin, Texas, shortly after beating Ginepri to capture the U.S. Open junior title. Roddick went on to beat then 161st-ranked Michael Russell, 6-4, 6-4, to take the Austin title.
Roddick, who grew up in nearby Boca Raton, Florida and now lives in Austin, is eager to accumulate more match play before the United States' opening-round Davis Cup tie against Romania set for February 10-12th at the LaJolla Beach & Tennis Club.
There is growing speculation Agassi and Roddick will be the American singles starters for that tie with twins Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan playing doubles, forming a team of four U.S. Open champions. That cast was in place last April when the U.S. was upset by eventual Davis Cup champion Croatia in Carson, California. Agassi hinted he hopes to play the Davis Cup tie in a conference call with the media. U.S. Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe will officially announce the U.S. squad next week. Tennis Week has contacted McEnroe for comment on Agassi's remarks.
It will be Roddick's fifth Delray Beach appearance. He reached the 2002 tournament final, falling to Davide Sanguinetti, 4-6, 6-4, 4-6.
The tournament begins on Monday at the Delray Beach Stadium & Tennis Center in Delray Beach, Florida. The Delray Beach ITC qualifying tournament will be contested this Saturday and Sunday. Saturday's rounds begin at 10 a.m., while Sunday's play begins at noon. Admission is free for both days of qualifying play.
Agassi, who practiced on Delray Beach stadium court yesterday, looking exceedingly fit in a black sleeveless adidas t-shirt and matching shorts, is friendly with Roddick, who grew up admiring the eight-time Grand Slam champion. The pair played an entertaining exhibition match in Richmond, Virginia last month and could join forces again in Davis Cup. For more information on the tournament, please visit the Delray Beach ITC web site.