Roddick Eases into Fourth Round at Australian Open By Defeating Lopez

Daniel KablackCorrespondent IIIJanuary 22, 2010

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 22:  Andy Roddick of the United States of America plays a backhand in his third round match against Feliciano Lopez of Spain during day five of the 2010 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 22, 2010 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Lucas Dawson/Getty Images)
Lucas Dawson/Getty Images

No. 7 Andy Roddick defeated No. 46 Feliciano Lopez in four sets in the third round of play at the Australian Open, but it didn't come easy.

Lopez, who was previously written off due to his poor performance in earlier match-ups during the Open, gave the seventh ranked Roddick all he could handle.

Coming out, losing the 58 minute first set 6-7, Roddick looked somewhat tired against the 28 year-old Spaniard, but he proceeded to fight back and took the second set 6-4 over Lopez.

The third set brought a few hotly contested games.

Looking tired and out-served by Lopez, Roddick pulled some strength from out of nowhere and aggressively finished off the rest of the set, taking a 2-1 lead in the match.

Roddick's workout routine has been credited for giving him the extra stamina he needs to win majors.

He finished the first three sets with a first serve percentage of 78 percent. When his first serve wins are better then 70 percent, he wins 83 percent of his matches.

During the fourth set, Roddick had his chances against Lopez, but he couldn't finish him off right away. Roddick used the next three games to play catch-up and ended up bringing the set into a tie-break. He ended up winning the tie-break 7-2, as Lopez blew the game with a few bad errors; including a return into the stands.

The 27 year-old Roddick has already won 28 singles titles and is currently considered one of the best players from the United States.

The former No. 1-ranked Roddick, lost in the semi-finals to Rodger Federer last year at the Australian Open.

Roddick will play No. 11 Fernando Gonzalez, who won a contest against Kazakhstan's Evgeny Korolev in five sets, in the fourth round of play.

Gonzalez has played in nine Australian Opens, his best finish in the finals in 2007.