Andy Roddick dished up a serving masterclass as he cruised past Jeremy Chardy in straight sets to reach the quarter-finals of the AEGON International.
Roddick took the first set comprehensively and while the second was forced into a tie-break, the American only dropped one point in his six service games before going on to seal the victory.
Roddick had a much easier path into the second round than his opponent Chardy. While the Frenchman was drawn into a three-set battle with qualifier Paul-Henri Mathieu, Roddick’s opponent Sam Querrey withdrew after just seven games with a back injury.
Now the duo met with a place in the quarter-finals up for grabs. It looked as if the match would be over as quickly as it had started, with world number 33 Roddick powering to a 6-2 victory in the opening set.
The big-serving former US Open champion always looked the more likely to break serve in the second set too, none more so than when the score was 6-5 in his favour and he faced match point.
However, he went on to squander that and four other opportunities to seal the victory, allowing Chardy the chance to force a tie-break.
The tie-break was close, to-ing and fro-ing between the pair as they each broke the other’s serves. But it was the crowd favourite Roddick who stepped up to finally secure a winning point and set up a match with Fabio Fognini in the final eight.
He said, “I served well and I returned pretty well. He served great on big points but I stuck through there.
“In those five match points, he came up with a couple passing shots and stuff he hadn’t done the whole match yet. In my mind I’m thinking, gosh, don’t let this one get away, please.
“I know a little bit about Fognini. He’s been out here for years now so we have certainly practiced together. I have seen him play and I’m sure he’s seen me play also.
“He’s a different style player than what I played first two rounds. He works the ball around, is a little sneakier about how he goes about a match.
“I’m comfortable on this surface though. The ball has been coming off great in practice, I’ve played three really good sets so far and hopefully I can continue on.”