7/31/12 5:54 AM | Ricky Dimon
A rivalry will be renewed on Tuesday in London when Novak Djokovic faces Andy Roddick. Djokovic is a heavy favorite on paper but Roddick has won two of his last three tournaments.
Novak Djokovic and Andy Roddick will be meeting for the ninth time in their careers but for the first time since the 2010 World Tour Finals when they clash in round two of the London Olympics on Tuesday.
Roddick leads the head-to-head series 5-3 thanks to a 5-1 streak from 2008 through the summer of 2010. His last win came that season in Cincinnati before Djokovic struck for a 6-2, 6-3 victory during round-robin action at the year-end tournament.
Although he may not be the same player now at 29 years old, Roddick could be in the midst of a resurgence. The veteran American looked lost on clay and even at the beginning of the grass-court swing (fell to Edouard Roger-Vasselin at Queen's Club). But he has suddenly won two of his last three events (Eastbourne and Atlanta) with a solid showing at Wimbledon in between.
Djokovic is 42-7 for his 2012 campaign; an awesome clip by almost anyone else's standards but pedestrian for those of Djokovic. The second-ranked Serb hasn't won a title since Miami, but he also hasn't lost prior to the quarterfinals of any tournament this season. He is coming off a semifinal loss to Roger Federer at the All-England Club.
Roddick can still be competitive in basically any grass-court match thanks to his serve, but he has to be the aggressive Roddick of old if he wants to have any chance in this one. Look for Djokovic to get the job done in straight sets, with at least one set being tight.
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