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Water bubble on court at US Open forces Andy Roddick-David Ferrer match to move smaller venue
NEW YORK (AP) ' Andy Roddick's match against David Ferrer at the U.S. Open has been moved to tiny Court 13 because of a problem with water gathering on the surface of the court in Louis Armstrong Stadium.
After two days of rain at the Grand Slam tournament, Roddick and Ferrer were able to play for less than 10 minutes Thursday. They got two games in before Roddick pointed out a spot where water was seeping up onto the playing surface.
While workers tried to dry the area, Roddick and Ferrer headed to the locker room. About an hour later, they returned to Louis Armstrong Stadium, but the court still wasn't usable. So they shifted from the tournament's second-biggest arena holding 10,103 seats to its smallest show court with 584 seats.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.
NEW YORK (AP) ' As if two days of rain hadn't caused enough problems at the U.S. Open, Andy Roddick's match against David Ferrer was halted because of a problem with the Louis Armstrong Stadium court after they played two games Thursday.
"We've had an inordinate amount of rain, and the rubber mat just beneath the surface of the court is completely saturated," U.S. Tennis Association spokesman Chris Widmaier said. "The sun is sucking that moisture out of the ground, and the water is actually coming through the surface."
Play had stopped after Roddick pointed out a spot a little larger than a cell phone where water was gathering behind one of the baselines. Chair umpire Carlos Bernardes climbed down to take a look, while a ball boy wiped the area with a white towel. Ferrer walked around the net to that side of the court to check out the troublesome patch.
Eventually, Bernardes suspended play in the fourth-round match, announcing to spectators: "We cannot continue the match. We have some problems with the court. It has become dangerous for the players to keep playing."
As workers began trying to figure out how to fix things, Roddick turned to Ferrer and said: "It's going to be at least 45 minutes to an hour. I say we go back to the locker room."
And so they left.
Tournament referee Brian Earley made his way out to Louis Armstrong Stadium to look at the problem.
Roddick and Ferrer originally were supposed to begin their match Tuesday, when showers washed out all action. On Wednesday, they managed to get in about 15 minutes of play, with Roddick taking a 3-1 lead, before rain caused a suspension.
Shortly after 11 a.m. Thursday, they finally resumed, but they played less than 10 minutes. Roddick led 4-2 when the match was halted again.
Three other fourth-round men's matches resumed Thursday morning under a sunny sky at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center: Rafael Nadal vs. Gilles Muller in Arthur Ashe Stadium, Andy Murray vs. Donald Young in the Grandstand and John Isner vs. Gilles Simon on Court 17.
Tournament director Jim Curley said Wednesday that all four remaining fourth-round matches would need to be completed Thursday in order to finish the tournament on time. The men's final is scheduled for Sunday.