But Blake wasn’t Sampras or Agassi, or even Roddick. Open Preview — A Weird Time in Tennis) But Blake’s connection to the U. Open was always stronger than the results he attained.He didn’t save American tennis, or even do much to stem its decline. He’s a local product (born in nearby Yonkers, raised in Connecticut) and enjoyed far more success in Flushing throughout his career than at Roland Garros and the All-England Club (he never advanced beyond the third round at the French Open or Wimbledon). It was more than the “unusual combination of H’s — Harvard, Harlem […], handsome and humble” that the magazine described in 2005.
For a while, mostly in 20, it really seemed like he would.
American tennis fans certainly wanted it and the signs were there: the back-to-back quarterfinal appearances at the U. Open, a stint as the 4th-ranked player in the world, the hopes that Blake and Andy Roddick might become the next generation’s Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras.
Johansson looked to have let his chance slip as Roddick hit back from two sets down with some stunning serving.
But in a tense final set, he saved a break point before a Roddick error gave him victory on the third match point.
By April 2005, he had dropped to 210th in the rankings.
But if there’s one thing American crowds like more than a rising star’s ascension, it’s a rising star’s comeback.
Wife of retired American tennis player and former world No.
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"Let's give him credit, the guy serves out of a tree," said Roddick afterwards.
"I had a good look at his serve in the fifth set but I just played a bad game.
Joachim Johansson held off a dramatic fightback from defending champion Andy Roddick to reach the semi-finals of the US Open on Thursday night.