Milos Raonic's serve too much for James Blake
The latest man to be on the business end of 21-year-old Milos Raonic's supersonic serve -- sometimes easier heard than seen -- was aging American pro James Blake. Not unreasonably, Blake lost their third-round U.S. Open match Saturday, 6-3, 6-0, 7-6 (3).
Raonic surpassed the 140-mph mark in each set, with a top speed of 143. He served 29 aces, giving him 89 in his three Open matches. He allowed Blake a glimpse at only two break points -- both saved by Raonic -- through the first two sets. (Blake finally got one break in the third.)
Blake, once as high as No. 4 in the rankings but now 115th at 32 after knee surgery, never had a chance against the young Canadian, seeded 15th here.
"Just makes for a day of not-so-much-fun tennis," Blake said. "With that serve, it can take him a long way because that can take the racket out of another guy's hands, completely take the rhythm out of a match."
"I'm from Montenegro," he said. "I don't think you've ever heard of a hockey player from Montenegro, so my parents said, 'Try tennis.' "
The cognoscenti already can envision Raonic, referred to as "The Missile," as a future Grand Slam contender, with an opportunity to measure his progress Monday against No. 3 Andy Murray.
In other action featuring Americans on the Open's Day 6, 19-year-old Jack Sock was beaten by Spain's Nicolas Almagro, the No. 11 seed, 7-6 (3), 6-7 (4), 7-6 (2), 6-1, before a packed and boisterous Grandstand crowd.
"The energy from that crowd was unbelievable," Sock said. "Great feeling."