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Relaxed Roddick ready for Hewitt at Oz Open

On Friday, second-seeded Andy Roddick and homegrown hero Lleyton Hewitt face off for a place in the Australian Open final.
PTI | By John Brock (AP), Melbourne
PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2005 04:45 PM IST

One has hardly raised a sweat. The other has been pushed to the limit.

On Friday, second-seeded Andy Roddick and homegrown hero Lleyton Hewitt face off for a place in the Australian Open final.

Roddick, the 2003 US Open champion and runner-up to Roger Federer at Wimbledon last year, is contesting his second Australian Open semifinal. He lost to Rainer Schuettler at this stage two years ago.

Australia's Hewitt, seeded third, has never been so far at his home Grand Slam. He had not got past the fourth round in eight visits before this tournament.

Roddick and Hewitt have taken contrasting paths into the final four. While Roddick has spent just under 7 1/2 hours on court and dropped one set in his five matches, Hewitt has been has gone the distance twice.

After a five-set, fourth-round win over Spain's Rafael Nadal, Hewitt toiled for just over four hours before edging past ninth-seeded David Nalbandian 6-3, 6-2, 1-6, 3-6, 10-8 in Wednesday's quarterfinals.

He has clocked up 14 1/2 hours over his five matches. Asked how much petrol he had left in the tank, the 2001 US Open and 2002 Wimbledon champion didn't miss a beat. "Probably just as much as my Ferrari at home," he said, in a rare reference to his new sportscar.

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