Roddick has back-up plan if Brisbane bid goes bust
ANDY Roddick has a Plan B in place if his Brisbane International campaign is torpedoed early in his first tournament in three months - asking for a match at Kooyong or a wildcard to Sydney.
Roddick is ready for today's draw to cast up some early round difficulties for him as top seed at the Tennyson event and, after recovering from a knee injury, he is keen to play a series of matches to bring him up to speed at the Australian Open.
The three-time Wimbledon runner-up named world No. 52 Richard Gasquet as among the dangerous floaters he may face. Frenchman Gasquet is playing his first tournament since the Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled he did not need to serve a suspension for a drug test which uncovered traces of cocaine.
Work-hungry Roddick yesterday practised with Belgian Xavier Malisse, who himself beat a suspension which had been placed on him for not supplying sufficient notice of his whereabouts to drug testers.
Roddick, the world No. 7, entered only one tournament, Brisbane, before the Australian Open, electing not to adopt his customary schedule by playing Kooyong's AAMI Classic.
''It was beneficial for me to get an extra tournament in before the Australian and Brisbane seemed the best place for me to start,'' he said.
''Colin Stubs (Kooyong tournament director) would, I think, be nice enough to let me play one match if I thought I needed it, but nothing is scheduled.''
growing pains'' in his return to the tour.
''He has worked extremely hard the last two months and is very motivated,'' Stefanki said. ''It's very important to get some matches here. If not, we may have to get him some matches at Kooyong or another tournament to have that base leading into the year.
''But he's played one match and one set since the US Open (in August). That's not a lot of tennis at this level of the game and there may be some growing pains - it's a fine line.
''He has to not get ahead of the truck so to speak - just play the next point because he hasn't played much tennis.''
Sydney's Medibank International, which starts next week, has three men's main-draw wildcards and while none has been announced, it is understood two players have been earmarked as recipients to enter the field headed by world No. 13 Gael Monfils and Lleyton Hewitt.
Sydney organisers said earlier this week they would consider a late application for a wildcard from Roddick or Scot Andy Murray if his British team does not make it out of the round-robin stage of Perth's Hopman Cup.