Roddick reaches Washington Classic Tennis final

WASHINGTON: US top seed Andy Roddick outlasted John Isner 6-7 (3/7), 6-2, 7-5 on Saturday to book a finals date with defending champion Juan Martin Del Potro at the ATP Washington Classic.

Fifth-ranked Roddick, playing in his first event since a five-set Wimbledon final loss to Roger Federer, fired only nine aces to 20 for Isner but hit 69 percent of his first serves and made just two unforced errors in the third set.

It took five break-point chances in the third set before Roddick finally broke Isner in the penultimate game, then held serve to win after two hours and 31 minutes.

Second seed Del Potro of Argentina defeated Chilean fourth seed Fernando Gonzalez 7-6 (7/2), 6-3 in a showdown of South America''s top players in the other semi-final at the 1.4 million-dollar hardcourt tournament.

Sixth-ranked Del Potro, who won his only prior match with fifth-ranked Roddick in last year''s Los Angeles final, will try to become the first back-to-back Washington champion since Andre Agassi in 1999.

Roddick, 26, seeks his 28th career crown and fourth in Washington after taking the title in 2001, 2005 and 2007, when he beat Isner, 24, in the final. It would be his second ATP title of the year after a February win at Memphis.

Del Potro, 20, seeks his sixth career title and second of the season after winning at Auckland in January.