10 May 2011

Roddick beaten early again

6:08 am on 10 May 2011

The American tennis player Andy Roddick continued his poor start to the clay-court season, beaten in straight sets by Gilles Simon in the opening round of the Rome Masters.

The 28-year-old former number one also lost in the first round of last week's Madrid Masters.

Roddick will play in next week's Nice Open before the year's second Grand Slam, the French Open.

The result coincides with the news that for the first time since rankings began, the United States doesn't have a player in the top ten of either the mens or womens rankings.

Mardy Fish, a player who has never reached a grand slam semi-final, is the top American male at number 11 while Serena Williams, the 13-times grand slam winner, is the highest female at 17th despite not having played for nearly a year.