U.S. Open Report: Blake Falls In Five-Set Marathon Against Haas

By Richard Kent
Updated: September 4, 2007

US Open NEW YORK — Welcome to the James Blake fan club. When it’s fun, it’s a lot of fun. When it’is not fun, it’s not fun at all. Sometimes this can happen in the middle of a match. That is what happened at the U.S. Open as Blake fell Monday to Tommy Haas in the fourth round.

Blake is just so consistently inconsistent that it is scary. He was favored over Haas and had a winning record against him, but lost in a five-set tiebreaker. The crowd was behind him the whole match. Blake fell 4-6, 6-4, 3-6, 6-0, and 7-6.

Blake looked like he would win easily in the first set and in almost unbelieveable fashion did not win a game in the fourth. For the match, Blake only served 54% and was a most woeful 6-18 in break points. He also had 75 winners to 69 for Haas.

Blake was down 2-4 in the fifth set and was able to battle back. He had three match points but could not convert any of them. In the tiebreaker to decide the match, Blake fell immediately 0-1 with his serve as he hit one into the net.

He brought it back to 3-3 with a winner down the line. Haas won the next three mostly on unforced errors by Blake. He challenged at match point, but was incorrect and fell.

Blake has never made it to the semis at the Open. In looking at the draw, one felt that this was his year. He was unable to capitalize on the draw. Haas was ecstatic with the win.

Late last night, Serena Williams played top-seeded Justine Henin. Henin has had success against Serena, but not in big matches. Williams has a much better serve and if her ground strokes are on she can win. Her volley is a question mark.