Net Cord Angels
The margins in tennis are definitely small and a few lucky net cords helped to decide two matches on Tuesday. One net cord went in Go Soeda's favor in the second set of his match with Xavier Malisse, as he served to stay in the match at 4-5. Another net cord winner at 5-5 led him to break Malisse and win the second set and, ultimately, the match. Malisse did not handle the lucky net cords well when he was broken in the second set. He bent his racquet twice over his knee and broke the handle off, receiving a racquet abuse warning. Blake also had a lucky net cord on Harrison's serve at 5-5 in the third set that led him to the break of serve and the win.
Will to Win
During the match with Harrison, Blake's serve hardly ever went above the low 100s. Blake had part of his patella tendon removed last November and as his knee recovered, he started to have problems with his right shoulder. Blake said "pure stubbornness" and the will to win helped him to his first win of the year. The biggest parts of Blake's game – his forehand and return of serve – were very accurate in the last two sets. "I'm just still trying to stay aggressive. That's what's most difficult. I was able to move forward [in the match] which I wasn't able to do [before]. My footwork wasn't there... but it's coming back now. It's not really an adjustment, but more being able to execute like I want to," Blake said.
Blake added he did not have any specific goals for the rest of the year. "I just try to do my best. There are some things that are out of my control. The next match I could blow out my back or my knee or something. And there are other times I could get two walkovers in a tournament. I don't worry about those things that are out of my control."
This was Blake's 350th singles win on the ATP World Tour.