Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2
We pick up our 1988 narrative in San Antonio, Texas, where Steffi emerges from her February hibernation.
The amazing thing about this article is that despite discussion of Steffi's "rust," she still won this match in 48 minutes and lost only 26 points.
Rusty Graf easily defeats MacGregor
Tuesday, MARCH 1, 1988
SAN ANTONIO - Steffi Graf showed the effect of five weeks away from tournament tennis, but Cammy MacGregor could not take advantages of her opportunities in the first round of the U.S. Women's Hardcourt Championships here Monday.
Graf emerged from her first action since the final of the Australian Open with a 6-1, 6-2 win before 1,500 people at the McFarlin Tennis Center in just 48 minutes.
The 18-year-old Graf, who became the undisputed No. 1 women's tennis player last year with a 75-2 record and 11 tournament championships, said she was not looking for a Texas meeting with Martina Navratilova when she scheduled to play in this tournament.
"I just wanted to play a tournament to start the hardcourt season and I had never played in Texas," she said of her decision to enter the Lynda Carter-Maybelline-sponsored event.
"If Martina had played in this tournament it would have been fine with me."
Graf is clearly the class of the tournament field. The next ranked player is No. 7 Helena Sukova of Czechoslovakia. She is the No. 2 seed and third-seeded is Lori McNeil of Houston, who is now 11th ranked on the women's computer.
McNeil, winner of the Oklahoma City Virginia Slims on Sunday, arrived here in time for a late Monday practice session. She plays Isabelle Demongeot of France today.
Asked if she feared anyone in this field, Graf replied, "I'm not afraid of anyone."
She admitted that she becomes bored when she is not playing tennis.
And she certainly was not tournament tough against MacGregor. If the Torrance, Calif., native could have kept alive on Graf's errors, she might have made a match of it, but MacGregor matched Graf error for error.
MacGregor had only five earned points and forced Graf into five errors. The others were unforced.
"My serve was working very well today," Graf explained. "But the rest of my game was rusty.
"After the Australian I played a couple of exhibitions, then took two weeks off and spent time with friends."
After defeating MacGregor en route to the Australian title Graf said that neither of them had played especially well. She agreed that observation could be made of their latest match.
"I wish we could have had longer rallies," she said in reference to her need for more tournament matches. "I need more playing time, you can't practice all the time."
Even with Graf's help MacGregor won only 11 points in the first set and 15 in the second. MacGregor's initial earned point evened the score at 15 in the seventh game of the first set.
MacGregor held serve in the fourth game off of four Graf errors and two errors helped her win in the fifth game of the second set. Only in the seventh game of that set did she put a couple of earned points together.
In the only other matches involving seeded players, No. 4 Katerina Maleeva of Bulgaria beat Jo Durie of Britain 6-1, 6-4 and No. 6 Nathalie Tauziat of France rallied past Louise Allen of Winston-Salem, N.C., 4-6, 7-6 (7-5), 6-2.
In other matches Monday, Sara Gomer of Britain downed Andriana Villagran of Argentina 6-3, 6-2; Beverly Bowes of Lubbock defeated Michelle Torres of Northfield, Ill., 6-3, 6-3; and Leila Meskhi of the Soviet Union edged Rosalyn Fairbank of San Diego 7-6 (9-7), 2-6, 6-4.
Japan's Etsuko Inoue outlasted Marianne Werdel of Bakersfield, Calif., 6-7 (6-8), 6-1, 7-6, 8-6. Akiko Kijimuta of Japan defeated Canada's Jill Hetherington 6-4, 6-3, and Katherin Keil of Los Angeles overcame Ann Grossman of Grove City, Ohio, 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-4). el,-3
Sampras upsets Krishnan
INDIAN WELLS, Calif. - Amateur Pete Sampras, a high school junior from Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., upset India's Ramash Krishnan, who's ranked 37th in the world, 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 in the first round of the $702,500 Champions Cup.
In two other upsets, Mark Woodforde of Australia ousted 14th-seeded Peter Lundgren of Sweden 7-6, 6-3 and Aaron Krickstein beat No. 16 Jimmy Arias 6-3, 7-5.
Boris Becker of West Germany and Australia's Pat Cash, seeded third and fourth, will see their first action today. The top two seeds, Sweden's Stefan Edberg and Czechoslovakia's Miloslav Mecir, will play Wednesday.
In other matches involving seeded players, ninth-seeded David Pate defeated Luiz Mattar of Brazil 6-2, 6-7, 6-2; No. 12 Eduardo Bengoechea of Argentina beat fellow countryman Javier Frana 6-2, 3-6, 7-6; and No. 15 Mikael Pernfors of Sweden stopped Horst Skoff of Austria 7-5, 6-1.
WICHITA, Kan. - Defending champion Barbara Potter advanced into the second round of the Virginia Slims of Kansas, but three seeded players lost and a fourth withdrew because of the flu.
Potter, of Woodbury, Conn., the tournament's second seed, opened with a 6-0, 6-4 victory over unseeded Dinky Van Rensburg of South Africa.
No. 4 Dianne Balestrat of Australia lost 7-6 (7-4), 6-1 to Natalia Bykova of the Soviet Union. Peanut Louie Harper of San Francisco trounced No. 5 Stephanie Rehe of Highland, Calif., 6-0, 6-2, and Soviet Svetlana Parkhomenko ousted No. 8 Claudia Porwik of West Germany, 6-4, 6-2.