• Roddick battles Muller for Atlanta Open title

    7/22/12 7:58 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Roddick battles Muller for Atlanta Open title Andy Roddick is one win away from triumphing in the city where he captured his first ATP title back in 2001. Standing in his way in Sunday's final is big-serving lefty Gilles Muller.

    Andy Roddick and Gilles Muller will be going head-to-head for the fifth time in their careers when they clash in the final of the BB&T Atlanta Open on Sunday afternoon.

    Roddick has won three in a row since getting shocked by Muller 7-6(4), 7-6(8), 7-6(1) in the 2005 U.S. Open first round. All four of their previous encounters have come on hard courts, with Roddick most recently prevailing 6-3, 6-2 a few months ago at the Sony Ericsson Open.

    The 29-year-old American went into borderline free-fall mode after a strong showing in Miami, but he is suddenly back on track. Roddick captured a title in Eastbourne, won two matches at Wimbledon, and so far this week he has defeated Nicolas Mahut, Michael Russell, and John Isner.

    Muller has been both lucky and good in Atlanta. After defeating Marinko Matosevic, the 63rd-ranked Luxembourgian trailed Mardy Fish by a set in round two but advanced when Fish had to retire after crashing into the net post. Muller then rolled over both Matthew Ebden and Go Soeda, improving his 2012 ATP record to 15-14.

    "It will be similar," Roddick said, comparing his tasks against Isner and Muller. "I just need to put some returns in play and get into rallies.... I'm excited. I went through a bad stretch there and now I'm playing for my second title in three tournaments. It's been a nice turnaround."

    The momentum should continue, but an other-worldly serving day from Muller (like the one he enjoyed against Soeda on Saturday) could pave the way to an upset. Atlanta is where Roddick captured his first career ATP title way back in 2001, and look for it to play host to his 32nd title after three big-hitting sets.

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