Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2
Tennis: Minter Brings Shriver's run to an end
Tuesday, January 19, 1988
From REX BELLAMY, Tennis Correspondent
MELBOURNE - Pam Shriver, who had won 13 consecutive singles matches, was beaten 6-2, 6-4 by Anne Minter, of Melbourne, in the Australian championships yesterday. During the press conferences Minter received an award - nothing to do with yesterday's win - and Shriver's popularity was diminished.
Australia's tennis writers gave Minter an elegant scroll in recognition of her performances, her sportsmanship and her cooperation with the media. Shriver talked at length about the strained groin muscle that has recently inhibited her freedom of movement.
She gave Minter credit for taking advantage of that but, even so, was guilty of 'whingeing' which is almost a cardinal sun among the 'Oz' sporting community. Shriver was frank and reasonable, as usual, but was unwise - in Australia of all places - to say anything depreciating her opponent's achievement.
Minter summed up the Australian attitude with the terse, unvarnished comment: 'If she's out there playing, she's fit.' We could debate this delicate subject for hours. My own view is that the Australians are right. No excuses. No whinging.
Shriver, who led 4-2 in the second set, had a low percentage with first services and did not even break even when she went to the net. Minter was accurate on both flanks, varied her game sensibly, and tested Shriver's agility beyond its capacity. Minter played a neatly composed match. Incidentally, she also makes all the right noises with the flute and piano.
Claudia Kohde-Kilsch, sho is prone to self-doubt, was twice thus afflicted before beating a sturdy Czechoslovak, Radka Zrubakova, aged 17. Steffi Graf lost only 11 points in taking the first eight games from Catrina Lindqvist. In the first set Lindqvist was on target with only 29 per cent of her first services and had no sort of timing.
The result was 6-0, 7-5 because Lindqvist played an admirable second set. Later she said of Graf: 'Everything is so fast. Other players take their time more. She hits the ball early, nobody else hits it so hard, and her ground strokes are so solid.'
Hana Mandlikova, who beat Lori McNeil, is the reigning champion and recently became an Australian citizen. She has a family in Czechoslovakia, a home in Sydney, represents a club in Queensland, and has a 42ft yacht in the Netherlands ('I go on my boat if I want to be alone'). She must be very restless.
The women's quarter-finals will be Graf v Mandlikova, Minter v Koohde-Kilsch, Claudia Porwik v Chris Evert, Helena Sukova v Martin Navratilova. Graf, Kohde-Kilsch and Porwik all represent Germany, holders of the world team championship.
Similarly, the men's team championships, Sweden have three players left: Stefan Edberg (the holder), Mats Wilander (his predecessor as champion here), and Anders Jarryd. The pairings are Ivan Lendl v Todd Witsken, Pat Cash v Michael Schapers, Jarryd v Wilander, and Andrei Chesnokov v Edberg.
Jarryd had a strenuous, anxious exchange of ground strokes yesterday with the nimble and unflinchingly tough John Frawley, whose brother, Rod, reached the Wimbledon semi-finals in 1981.
The rugged-looking Frawley could be pictured in the boxing ring or the front row of a scrum. Jarryd took four hours and eight minutes to beat him 3-6, 6-1, 6-7, 7-6, 6-2. The more experienced Jarryd just had the edge in physical and mental resilience.
Chesnokov, a Russian, is the first Soviet citizen to advance to the last eight since Alex Metraveli, a Georgian, who reached the 1972 semi-finals and a 1973 and 1975 quarter-finals.
In the doubles Andrew Castle, of Britain, and the Argentine-born Roberto Saad, who first got to know each other at Wichita State University, saved nine match points before beating David Lewis (New Zealand), brother of the 1983 Wimbledon runner-up, and Ivo Werner of Germany.
That put Castle and Saad in the quarter-finals, which feature a potentially blood-curdling match between Jeremy Bates (Britain) and Peter Lundgren and Kelly Evernden and Johan Kriek.
Last week Bates beat Everden in singles and accused him of being arrogant, where-upon Evernden suggested that Bates was a wimp (which is not listed in my travelling dictionary)
What fun they should have together. I do hope that Lundgren and Kriek keep out of the way - and that nothing incurable happens to Bates and Evernden.