Roddick recovers to clinch victory over dangerous Llodra

LONDON - Andy Roddick finally woke up in time to prevent an unexpected second-round exit at Wimbledon yesterday when he came through 4-6 6-4 6-1 7-6 against dangerous Frenchman Michael Llodra.

LONDON - Andy Roddick finally woke up in time to prevent an unexpected second-round exit at Wimbledon yesterday when he came through 4-6 6-4 6-1 7-6 against dangerous Frenchman Michael Llodra.

Roddick, runner-up last year, dropped serve to love in the fifth game of the opening set against a player comfortable on grass but raised his game to dominate the next two sets.

Llodra regrouped in the fourth set and pushed the American into a tiebreak but Roddick forged 6-2 ahead and clinched victory when he punched away a forehand into a gaping court.

Roddick, hugely popular at Wimbledon after his three final defeats by Roger Federer, celebrated by kicking a ball into the crowd.

Belgians Kim Clijsters and Justine Henin wiped the smiles off their opponents' faces in double-quick time in other matches yesterday. Henin waded her way through a sea of spectators before getting her first glimpse of the All England Club's sunken Court Two, which was unveiled 12 months ago when the former world No1 was still savouring retired life.

She dispatched German Kristina Barrois 6-3 7-5.

Less than an hour later, Clijsters hurried past Croatian Karolina Sprem 6-3 6-2.

Angelique Kerber of Germany beat Shahar Peer of Israel 3-6 6-3 6-4, Hungarian Greta Arn defeated Russian Alicia Molik 7-5 6-4, Regina Kulikova of Russia overcame Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan 6-2 6-4 and Bulgarian Tsvetana Pironkova saw off Vera Dushevina of Russia 6-3 6-4.

Lleyton Hewitt of Australia edged Evgeny Korolev of Kazakhstan 6-4 6-4 3-0 and Australian Juergen Melzer beat Serbian Viktor Troicki 6-7(5) 4-6 6-3 7-6(6) 6-3.

Florian Mayer of Germany defeated American Mardy Fish 6-7(2) 6-3 6-4 6-4 and Lu Yen-Hsun of Taiwan beat Michal Przysiezny of Poland 6-4 7-6(7) 6-3. - Reuters

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