Roddick to take teenager Del Potro in Los Angeles final

August 10th, 2008 - 2:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Los Angeles, Aug 10 (DPA) Andy Roddick and Juan Del Potro ripped effortlessly into the Sunday final at the Los Angeles Classic, posting straight-set sweeps of outclassed opponents. Both the top seeds charged into the title encounter without the loss of a set.

Roddick stopped Germany’s Denis Gremelmayr 6-2, 6-2 as the number 89 challenger saved four match points before missing a volley to lose in 61 minutes.

Del Potro staked his claim on a third consecutive title as he hammered Mardy Fish 6-2, 6-1, reaching his first final on hardcourt.

Roddick, who last played for a trophy when he won Dubai in early March, was pleased his summer strategy is working to perfection so far. The American is glad he chose to stay home and build up for the US Open starting just over a fortnight.

“I wanted to be prepared, not flying back from Beijing and starting a major five days later,” said Roddick, his ranking down to ninth. “It’s working out well for me.”

He added: “I’ve been to the Olympics once, that made my decision easier. The Open is my best chance to win a Grand Slam.”

Roddick needed five match points to go through with a final break as Gremelmayr stiffened his resistance at the end.

Del Potro broke the sixth-seeded American Fish five times and set up match points with his seventh ace.

“I’ve very happy, I played unbelievable today,” said the Argentine, who is set for a move into the top 20. “Mardy’s a good player but I didn’t let him do anything today.

“I’m so happy to be in my first hardcourt final, I’d love to win another title.”

Despite defeat, Fish said the week has helped his campaign after he joined Roddick in skipping Beijing, where rain delayed the start of the tennis event Sunday.

“He was tough, that was more to do with it than anything else,” Fish said of Del Potro. “He’s shown that he can play on any surface.

“And he’s only 19 - that’s scary. But this has been a good week to build on for me, it can help to turn my summer around.”

Roddick is using this week in LA and the next one in Washington to recover, after a shoulder injury which forced him from the French Open was followed by neck spasms last week in Cincinnati that kept him from starting in that tournament.

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