WASHINGTON -- Andre Agassi returned to his winning ways at
the Legg Mason Tennis Classic on Wednesday with a 6-3, 6-4 victory
over Wayne Black to advance to the third round.
Agassi, a five-time champion of this event and its top seed,
entered the match against Black carrying a two-match losing streak,
both in opening rounds. The first was to Ivan Ljubicic, ranked 58th
in the world, in Montreal and the second to Gasto Gaudio, ranked
56th, in Cincinnati last week.
"The last couple of weeks the first round has been the most
difficult part of the tournament for me," Agassi said after his
match. "This is a place that allows my game to come out a little
bit. I get to work my feet, my shots and it should only get
Agassi, who won the Australian Open in January for his seventh
Grand Slam title, looked like himself again as he ran Black all
over the court with sharp angles created by his groundstrokes,
which set up 34 winners. Agassi, who also had 10 aces, broke serve
once in each set to take control of the match.
"I felt so tentative the last couple of weeks hitting the ball,
and once I second guess my swing my feet stop," Agassi said. "But
when it all comes together it can become a real tight package."
The first break came in the opening set's fourth game as Agassi
ripped a backhand crosscourt to take a 3-1 lead. The second break
came with the second set tied at 1-1, when Agassi capitalized with
a forehand winner.
Earlier Wednesday, Andy Roddick survived a wild first set before
settling down and beating Paradorn Srichaphan 7-6 (2), 6-3 to
advance to the third round.
Other seeded players advancing to the third round were: No. 3
Tommy Haas, who beat Tomas Zib 6-3, 6-2; No. 5 Dominik Hrbaty, who
defeated Anthony Dupuis 7-6 (5), 5-7, 6-2; No. 6 Jan-Michael
Gambill, who made short work of Felix Mantilla 6-3, 6-1; No. 7
Nicolas Lapentti, a 6-0, 6-1 winner over Alex Kim; No. 11 Guillermo
Canas, who beat Cecil Mamit 3-6, 6-1, 6-1; No. 12 Greg Rusedski,
who beat Julien Boutter 6-4, 7-6 (2); No. 15 Fernando Vicente, who
needed three sets to beat Peter Wessels 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (4); and No.
16 Jerome Golmard, who beat Mike Bryan 7-5, 6-2.
Michael Chang rallied to pull off the day's only upset as he
ousted the No. 8 Nicolas Kiefer 3-6, 6-3, 6-2.
After nearly being eliminated in the tournament's opening round
on Monday, the ninth-seeded Roddick was again forced to fight
through a tough first set. This one saw him squander two service
breaks and fall behind 4-3 after he had jumped out to a 3-0 lead.
"I let up a little bit and he started playing some great
tennis," Roddick said. "I think he almost gave me a little too
much at the beginning so I became kind of complacent."
Each player broke serve three times in the first set, including
Roddick's break of Srichaphan at love to take a 6-5 lead. But
Srichaphan, who had nine break-point chances in the first set
alone, broke Roddick at love in the following game to set up the
"Usually I'm pretty comfortable when I break someone three
times in a set," Roddick said. "I didn't know what was going on.
He was getting my first serve back pretty deep, and on the second
serve returns he was going for broke. It was working for him."
The momentum carried into the tiebreaker for Roddick as he won
the first five points before smashing an overhead into the net.
Roddick regrouped and won the tiebreaker 7-2 when a backhand by
Srichaphan sailed long.
The second set opened like the first with Roddick taking a 4-0
lead, and control of the match. Srichaphan broke once more to cut
the lead to 4-1, but Roddick held at 4-2 and 5-3 to close out the
In other matches Wednesday, Marcelo Rios beat Michael Joyce 6-2,
6-2, and Ramon Delgado defeated Jacobo Diaz 7-5, 4-6, 6-3.