IT'S Australia's shout as American Andy Roddick celebrated his 30th birthday on Friday by announcing his retirement at the end of the US Open.
"We'll talk after this," Roddick joked in reply to an Australian journalist who invited the former US Open champion out for a few beers to celebrate his birthday and distinguished career ahead of his second-round match with Gold Coast teen Bernard Tomic on Saturday (9am AEST).
In what is going to be one of the most anticipated second-round matches regardless, the former world No.1's announcement has added more impetus to the first-time meeting of the aging star and rising star.
"I could come out and play great, or it could be the worst thing you've ever seen," Roddick said. "I don't know. I've never done this before. I'm sure it will be very emotional. I'm sure I'll still be nervous."
A day after a changing of the guard in women's tennis with England teen Laura Robson ending three-time US Open champion Kim Clijsters' career, Roddick faces the 19-year-old Tomic in what potentially will be his last match under lights in New York, his last match period.
"It's the most electric atmosphere in our sport," said Roddick, who has played the most night matches at the US Open. "Hopefully it won't be my last one."
Tomic, who emulated Roddick as a US Open Junior champion in 2009, is looking to reach the third round at the US Open for the first time, Roddick for the tenth and final time in his 13 appearances at Flushing Meadows.
Roddick is the last American to win a Grand Slam, winning the 2003 US Open when Tomic was just 10, but he also reached four other major finals - losing to 17-time major champion Roger Federer each time (including the epic 16-14 final set in the 2009 Wimbledon final).
Federer, who swept aside German Bjorn Phau in the second round yesterday, wants his friend and rival to go out on a high note.
"It's one not to be missed and I hope it's not his last," Federer told the New York crowd after his 6-2 6-3 6-2 win. "I hope you guys are going to make it tough for Tomic. Andy truly deserves a great crowd and a great atmosphere."
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.