• US Open, Day Three

What They Said

ESPN staff
August 31, 2011
Andy Murray had a tough workout against Somdev Devvarman © Getty Images

Robin Soderling was forced to withdraw on the morning of his first-round match after waking up unwell. His agent Nina Wennerstrom said: "He is feeling really bad. His stomach was hurting. He experienced head pain, and the doctor recommended to him not to play. They donĀ“t know what kind of virus it is, but the doctor thinks it can be something related to the throat problems he had a couple of weeks ago, which made him have to withdraw from the Masters tournament in Cincinnati. He started feeling ill last night and still was hoping to play his match, but basically he was feeling too bad to play a five-set match in a grand slam tournament. He will try to get back home as soon as possible for further examinations."

Andy Murray opened up with an ultimately impressive three-set win over Somden Devvarman and he will look to take confidence into the rest of the fortnight. He said: "I thought the second and third sets were good. I was nervous at the start, I think that showed as I got off to a slow start, but once I got through the first set I started to play better and I think that will be important through the tournament. I have got to play better each round and find a way to win.

"Once I managed to play closer to the baseline and hit through the court a bit more, I started to dictate. It is breezy on the court so it is easy to get behind the baseline from one end, but once I got closer to the baseline I started to hit through the ball and got a lot of free points." Up next for Murray is Robin Haase and he said: "He is a good player, he nearly beat Rafa one year at Wimbledon. He likes playing big matches, he has a good record in slams and he will be tough."

Laura Robson bowed out with a defeat to Anabel Medina Garrigues and the Brit has admitted she needs to find some consistency in her game. She said: "I am disappointed, but I am happy I kept playing aggressive. A few more shots in here and there could have made the difference. I have always said a game that suits me is aggressive so missing a few shots here and there should not force me to change. I just need to find some consistency. There are a lot of positives. It is the first time I have qualified and I think I am playing well at the moment. My short-term goal would be to break into the top 100 and next year I want to qualify for the Olympics."

Vera Zvonareva was forced to dig deep to beat Kateryna Bondarenko in three sets and the Russian has admitted it was a tough battle. She said: "It was a good test for me. You know, I have known Kateryna for a long time and I knew she was a dangerous player, so I expected a very tough match. And it was. I think I didn't play my best tennis, but I managed to get through this one. I gave myself another chance to go out there and next time and try to do a little bit better.

"I always don't play my best tennis in the first or second round. It's never happened. And it was the same last year. I'm not worried about it. Most important is to get through those matches. These kind of matches, they give you confidence that you advance, so now you have another chance."

Venus WIlliams pulled out of her second round match because of illness. She said: "I have been recently diagnosed with Sjogren's Syndrome. It is an ongoing medical condition that affects my energy level and causes fatigue and joint pain."

"I enjoyed playing my first match here and wish I could continue, but right now I am unable to. I am thankful I finally have a diagnosis and I am now focussed on getting better, and returning to the court soon."

Sabine Lisicki was handed a bye due to Williams' withdrawal. The German said: "I saw her and I heard she practiced as usual. I saw her in her match clothes so was fully prepared and really looking forward to the match. Yeah, I hope she will be fine quick."

Juan Martin del Potro proved way too good for Filippo Volandri and is working hard to climb the ladder. He said: "I am working every day, very hard. It is very tough. I want to be back with the top players and every day I am getting closer to the top ten players."

Andy Roddick won his match on Wednesday in four sets, but had his mind on the difficulty of other jobs after the match - namely that of ESPN tennis analyst. He said: "Tennis analyst is the easiest job in the world because whatever the person does, if it works you just say 'that's what's good', and if it doesn't work, you guys go, 'he should have done the other things'. So, you know, I'm pretty convinced that I could be a tennis analyst one day, it just doesn't take much thought. If I'm grinding and I'm winning, you guys are like, 'he's reinvented himself'. If I'm playing like crap and pushing, then, you know, 'he's horrible and he needs to hit the ball'. Everyone's an expert but I'm better than most of them, I believe."

Maria Sharapova thrashed Anastasiya Yakimova in their second round clash, but the Russian star was not getting ahead of herself just yet. She said: "The next match is certainly not the final. We're in the third round. There are many more to go. It only gets tougher from here. But that's what's so special about being a winner at the end of the tournament. You have to play every match. It's a road. Hopefully, I'll get to that stage."

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