Federer praises Roddick as rival′s Open goodbye continues

“Andy was a great competitor and a great champion. We had some epic battles over the years,” said the Swiss. “He truly deserves a great ovation and a great atmosphere.”Federer, who beat Roddick in three Wimbledon finals, including their last in 2009 which ended 16-14 in the fifth set, has nothing but respect for the 30-year-old American, ranked 22nd.

Roddick continued his run in the game as he showed full power in a three-set defeat of Australian Bernard Tomic to reach the third round.

Longtime Roddick pal James Blake, a 32-year-old who is still in the mix at Flushing Meadows, said he watched his friend’s retirement media conference before going out for a match where he beat Marcel Granollers.

“We’ll miss Andy a ton. He’s been great. His career has been incredible. He’s been such a stalwart in Davis Cup.

“I can never repay him for winning me a Davis Cup, for being the anchor on that team, clinching every match that year, just about. It’s a great friendship. That will continue, but we’ll miss his career, his charisma on the court, his excitement, what he brought to the game.”

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