Roddick ready to bury Murray under avalanche of aces

LONDON: Andy Roddick is planning to bury Andy Murray under an avalanche of aces in Friday's Wimbledon semi-final.

Roddick scrambled into his first last four appearance at Wimbledon since 2005 with a dramatic 6-3, 6-7 (10/12), 7-6 (7/1), 4-6, 6-4 victory over Australia's Lleyton Hewitt on Wednesday.

The American, seeded sixth, had to serve 43 aces before he could finally subdue Hewitt and he knows he will have to produce more of the same to end Murray's hopes of becoming the first British man to win Wimbledon for 73 years.

"Andy has been playing great. He's certainly come into his own as a player but with my serve, I can give myself a chance in any match," Roddick said.

"I've been in this situation many times. I'm gonna have to play well, and hopefully he would probably say the same."

Although Roddick had to survive a three hour 50 minutes marathon to see off Hewitt, he insists there is no chance his performance against Murray will be seriously affected by the lengthy battle in sweltering temperatures on Court One.

"At this point I feel fit and I feel healthy," 26-year-old Roddick said. "I felt fine out there physically. I'm sure I'll pull up a little bit sore, but that's to be expected.

"I'm in better shape now than I was when I was 24 so it shouldn't be too much of a factor."

Roddick has lost six of his eight encounters with Murray, who looked impressive in his brutual quarter-final dismisal of Juan Carlos Ferrero.

The 2003 US Open champion believes Murray came of age with his dramatic fourth round win over Richard Gasquet at Wimbledon last year and he is full of respect for the Scot.

"I think this tournament did wonders for him last year, especially the Gasquet match," Roddick said.

"Everyone thought it was going to be a matter of time. He's certainly capable of hitting all the shots. It was just a matter of being able to do it day after day.

"There's a certain comfort level where you go out there and it's like second nature. I think he's acquired that since last year here.

"He doesn't really have a lot of weaknesses or any for that matter. He's improved his serve a lot. He returns well.

"I know how hard this game is, so anybody who is near the top of it certainly has my respect. I know what goes into it and what it takes on a daily basis."

Roddick has plenty of experience of big matches on Wimbledon's Centre Court after reaching the final in 2004 and 2005, although both those appearances ended in defeat to Roger Federer.

He knows he can expect the crowd to be firmly behind home favourite Murray on Friday, but Roddick can't wait to taste the partisan atmosphere.

"I'm looking forward to it," he said. "We might be able to count the people for me on one hand. But I think it will certainly be something to remember.

"I think the crowd's going to be electric. It's going to be a great atmosphere and one that I can certainly appreciate, even if it's not for me. I'm just going pretend when they say, 'C'mon, Andy', that they mean me!"