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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, April 4, 2010

Tennis: Roddick beats Berdych to win Key Biscayne title


STEVEN WINE
AP Sports Writer

KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. Andy Roddick used a dominating serve and smart baseline game Sunday to beat Tomas Berdych 7-5, 6-4 and win the Sony Ericsson Open.

Roddick coaxed an errant backhand from Berdych on championship point, and responded to the crowd's cheers with a thumbs-up. He improved to 26-4 this year, best on the men's tour. He also won the tournament in 2004. This was his fifth Masters 1000 title, and his first since 2006.

Roddick, seeded sixth, varied the pace on his groundstrokes to keep Berdych off balance while committing only 16 unforced errors. He had 13 aces and never faced a break point. Roddick lost only seven points on his serve in the second set and dropped just two service games in the tournament.

Roddick's slice backhand repeatedly forced the 6-foot-5 Berdych to hit the ball at ankle level, robbing his forehand of power. While searching to find a rhythm with his strokes, Berdych also lost track of the score in the ninth game, lining up to serve from the wrong side.

The match turned two games later, when Roddick reached break point for the first time. He broke when Berdych hit a forehand out, then held at love to take the first set.

That was part of a streak where Roddick won five consecutive games. He broke again to start the second set when Berdych hit another errant forehand.

The No. 16-seeded Berdych, playing in only his second Masters 1000 final, made just 48 percent of his first serves. He reached deuce on Roddick's serve only once.

The net game that helped Roddick beat Rafael Nadal in the semifinals wasn't much of a factor. He won only 8 of 16 points at the net.

Roddick earned $605,500. Berdych received $295,500.