LEUVEN, Belgium, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- Andy Roddick beat Christophe Rochus 6-1, 6-2, 6-3 in straight sets Friday to pull the United States even with Belgium in their Davis Cup playoff.
Roddick, the former world No. 1 and 2003 U.S. Open champion, is playing his first tennis since being knocked off by Luxembourg's Gilles Muller in the opening round of the Open three weeks ago.
The best-of-five Davis Cup battle is knotted at 1-1, with the winner joining the World Group draw in 2006. The U.S. squad is captained by Patrick McEnroe.
In the day's opening match, James Blake was beaten by Olivier Rochus, 6-4, 7-5, 6-1 in Blake's first action since his quarter-final showing at the U.S. Open.
Saturday's pivotal doubles will have American twin brothers, Bob and Mike Bryan, facing Olivier Rochus and Kristof Vliegen. Sunday's reverse singles will have Roddick meeting Olivier Rochus and Blake facing Christophe Rochus.