I felt a lot of relief as Andy Roddick breezed through his match with Bernard Tomic. While it wasn't the drama and intensity that I pictured it might be, that was just fine for the time being. I think most people were pretty stunned by Andy's sudden news of retirement. While many were predicting it might happen soon, I don't think anyone was expecting it to be so abrupt. In fact, he didn't even tell his parents or his brother until the day of the announcement! With it happening so suddenly I found I wasn't ready to let him go so quickly.
I certainly have had mixed feelings about Roddick over the years. On the one hand he can be an incredibly witty and charming guy who you can't help but like, but then he can turn around and act in unbecoming ways on court to chair umpires or lines people. Overall,. though, when Andy was playing I would make a point to watch and I genuinely wanted him to do well (unless of course he was playing a certain guy named Roger Federer, who I never cheer against for anyone!).
It's been fun to see some of the footage of a very young Roddick winning his first ATP title or the disbelief and incredible joy when he won the U.S. Open. Then there was the heartbreaking loss in the 2009 Wimbledon final where even those who desperately wanted Federer to surpass Pete Sampras's record with a win couldn't help but feel the heartbreak that Andy was showing. Overall, though, his sense of humor is what stands out for me when I think of him, and I will sincerely miss his presence on the tour.
I'm not looking forward to the final goodbye. I'm sure it will be emotional and I will need to have the Kleenex box nearby. But that won't be happening quite yet and I hope he makes it well into the second week.