'blogging' for USA Today this time
Roddick flies under the radar, except with British media
Andy Roddick, the No. 8 seed, is a three-time Wimbledon runner-up. He opens play against qualifier Andreas Beck on Monday. He'll check in with USA TODAY's Douglas Robson throughout the fortnight.
I arrived at Wimbledon about a week ago after playing the grass-court tuneup at Queens. I always get a kick out of staying in the village. You bump into everyone all the time. Going to a restaurant is basically like an extension of the players' lounge. You say hi to four to five before you sit down at your table.
We have a healthy entourage in our flat this year: My wife, Brooklyn Decker; my coach, Larry Stefanki; my physiotherapist, Doug Spreen; and Stephen Little, a cabbie I befriended a few years ago. It's a full house.
I always have a fun rapport with the reporters and tabloids here in England. A couple years ago they were on me for liking singer Rick Astley. Last year it was my criticism of World Cup officiating. Another year it was my appearance on a British game show. Really, I don't plan anything.
This year they asked me what I do during a rain delay at Queens. I said I was playing the mobile app Angry Birds, and they thought that was hilarious. Next thing I know it was trending on Twitter here. I thought it was a pretty straightforward answer. It's only like the most downloaded app ever!
Of course the talk of the last couple days has been the rematch of Isner-Mahut. I heard about it from an attendant in the locker room on Friday during the draw ceremony. My reaction was no different than anyone else. C'mon, really? Another American, Sam Querrey, had to pull out of Wimbledon and just had surgery on his elbow. From all reports it went as well as it could have considering what was going on. You just feel bad for him. I guess it's something he had to take care of before it got worse.
Heading into Monday's first round, I'm feeling great about my game even though I haven't played a lot the last couple of months. The last 3-4 weeks have been the most positive I've had in a while. I played pretty well at Queens, where I lost to Andy Murray in the semifinals.
I don't know much about my first-round opponent, Andreas Beck of Germany. We have never played. I've had to do some research, and YouTube is my friend when I'm not totally familiar with guys. I was able to find some slow-mo of his strokes, some different things and clips from matches. Larry and I were watching some of that (Sunday) morning, and I'll probably try to ask a couple of guys later in the afternoon what he's all about.
There's talk that I'm flying under the radar this year, but I don't care. I don't mean that in a way where you're trying to be cool for not caring. I'm just not that concerned with it. I've done it both ways — on the radar and off — and at this point it's not going to affect me either way.