THE ANDY MAN CAN

Nineteen-year-old tennis wunderkind Andy Roddick combines a powerful groundstroke typical of Andre Agassi with a blinding serve (exceed-ing 140 mph) the likes of Pete Sampras. The 2000 winner of the boys’ singles Australian Open, Roddick hopes to repeat in 2002, this time in the men’s category.

AW: Anything you would change about the way your career has unfolded so far?
AR:
Not really. I mean, sure, I wish I could win every match, and I may regret some of the things I do on court, but I believe that is all part of the learning curve.

AW: Have you patterned your game after anyone?
AR:
I think it’s impossible to mold yourself after someone else. You can watch and learn from other players but you have to have your own style. I see coaches try to teach everyone Agassi’s forehand. If that were possible, then we would have already seen more like him. They should teach someone how to get the best out of what they have.

AW: What do you hope to accomplish this year?
AR:
I have been improving at a steady pace and I feel if I can keep doing that, then the results will hopefully take care of themselves.

AW: Any advice for other young players?
AR:
This may sound a bit boring, but nothing can help more than hard work. Also, the game becomes much easier to handle if you are having a good time doing it. Find a way to make it fun and it will come a lot easier. — J.E.M.