A (Blanche Roddick)
Q- You have three boys, tell me a little bit about them.
A- Lawerence is 15 years older and john is six years older than Andy. They are all spread out. I loved it that way.
Q-John also played tennis. Was there competition between them?
A- No. It was good because there was so much age difference. When Andy was nine, John was with the national team playing all over the world.
Q-What was the most challenging thing about having two boys playing tennis?
A- We tried to keep comparison out of it. We were constantly asked: Is Andy better tan john was at this age? We really never answered it. Andy played almost a year in Florida before andy knew he was the brother of John Roddick, who was on the national team.
Q- Are there any special stories about the brothers?
A- Lawerence is a spring board diver, so when Andy was two, Lawerence was competing nationally in a spring board competition. Andy hasn't seen him for awhile because Lawerence was in an aquatics program in CA. Andy was in the pool and Lawerence jumped in to play with him. He splashed Andy and Andy said "Don't mess with Andy!" Lawerence remembers that to this day- "Don't mess with Andy!" One thing the three boys did together was play ping pong. Whenever they were together, they would be outside playing on the ping pong table. would find paddles in the pool and on the roof. They ran out of balls because they smashed them. Thats one thing that anyone who visited the house would remember the battles on the ping pong table.
Q- Andy wrote a book about tennis when he was a kid, tell me about that.
A- It was amazing. He was in 2nd grade and wrote about the top 10 players. He wrote a little blurb about each of them. His teacher would bind them and put them in the library. I have the original copy of the tennis book. I think that Andy checked his own book out of his schol twice.
Q- When he hit a spell where he wasn't winning juniors, how was that to deal with?
A- When he was 12, he never lost a match. My husband and I would actually go to the courts and hope that he would lost because we didn't want that pressure of always winning on him. Everyone expected him to win. He would win the first set and than in his head he'd keep saying "I can't lose, I can't lose" Well, he would freeze and lose. One day he said "Mom, I have it figured out. I don't have to play for anyone, I just have to play for myself." Than it was off his shoulders. He was 14.
Q- I know in my home that there is a lot going on. Theres school, tenis lessons and tournaments on the weekend. How did you juggle all of that?
A- Theres one rule that I think was very important. No matter how hectic the schedule, the evening meal was with everybody. No television. No tennis talk. They would talk about school, activities, friends, whatever. That was always a rule.
Q- Is it true that Andy was once clock-watching while he played a tournament so that he could get to his senior prom?
A- Yes. It was prom day and he was the last match on. So for him to make prom, he had to walk off the match. We told him it was fine.
Q- Are there any moments that make you proud?
A- (Mrs.Roddick than starts talking about 3 little boys Andy's visited that were sick and she says..) "When he reaches out, its so much more than tennis. Through tennis he reaches out to people, but its so much more than that."