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Old Apr 2nd, 2014, 08:18 PM   #3451
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

One of my favorites. Back then, there was still an occasional semblance of freedom of the press, at least concerning Steffi's wins during Monica's absence. It is also interesting that Arantxa, like Steffi after the 1993 AO final, resolved to improve her game and rise to the challenge.

Graf now alone at summit of tennis
PENNY CRISP
January 31, 1994
The Age

How could we have forgotten about Steffi Graf? How dare we have consigned her to the podium marked: "Champion in Another's Absence".

Now the puzzlement over the decision by Monica Seles to miss the Australian Open has been tempered. She knew.

Back in Florida, where she is reportedly training up a storm, adding different parts to her game, aiming for total domination, Seles heard what was happening with Graf: the new racquet, the first foray into a weight training regimen, the perfect health after a season of pain and muddled routine.

And when she watches a replay of Saturday's brief final against Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, as she must, Seles will feel vindicated. She will see the look in the Spaniard's eyes as she sought and held her mother's eyes for the first time, just after Graf broke to 4-0.

If Sanchez Vicario were less pugnacious, it could have been something between hopelessness and despair. But it was just a look, between mother and daughter; perfect cognition.

Sanchez Vicario explained it later. Three times now she has lost in a Grand Slam final, yet she was never as dampened in the aftermath as on Saturday. Never had she been so completely slaughtered, not even by Seles, who beat her the first two times.

"You think, well, I try my best but she is still killing me and I cannot do anything," she said.

Sanchez Vicario stuck to her guns for a while, insisting it was not her day, that she did not play well, that it had nothing to do with her opposition not allowing her to play. It was not all the matches she had confronted as she wound her way through three draws: singles, doubles and mixed. It was definitely something strange, out of the ordinary.

"It's the first time I feel this way," she said. "Normally, you know, I can get back into the match, I can come back, but even today I did not feel the same way."

Her legs would not work properly, she was late getting to the ball, she hung in, trying something different, but to no avail. She had her chances, she said, but added in a very sad, small voice: "They go away, also."

Finally, she had to admit it. Maybe she would not have won, no matter how well she had performed. Maybe she simply could have come closer.

Later, in her native language, Sanchez Vicario permitted a smattering of hatred to rest in her stare: the eye of the conquistador thwarted.

Then she wilted, old and tired, this even-tempered, life-loving 22-year-old.

This is what happens when Graf lifts her game to aim at Seles. Far from accepting that the No.2 position was her rightful rung, Graf instead put a plan into motion, a perfection goal, an anticipation of the battle.

"Especially in the first set, I didn't seem to make many mistakes," said a delighted Graf, her previous misery over her inability to show her best now more comprehensible. "Whatever I did, it was close to the lines, it was the right shot and perfect timing, so I don't think there have been many moments that I can say I have played like that."

How cruel for the German that Seles could not be around to test it out. Here is Graf, playing like a dream - all delicacy and power, wisdom and accuracy - and no one is even close enough to push her.

Here is some rare, elite deer, pigtail flying, in a mood of majesty, a zone of greatness, and all people can ask is if she is missing Monica.

"Yee-ees," said Graf wistfully on Saturday. She did.

Of course, what Seles now has to ponder is her place in history, and how it seems to be slipping away.

With Saturday's win, Graf completed a non-calendar-year Grand Slam.

Only two women have done the calendar bit: Margaret Court in 1969 and Graf herself in 1988, when she also won the Olympic gold medal.

Some years back, when the International Tennis Federation foolishly offered $US1million for the next Grand Slammer, Martina Navratilova succeeded in having her non-calendar-year stint in 1983-84 recognised.

Graf does not agree with this acceptance, but the history books will record anyway that both Navratilova and Graf won four on the trot.

Seles has not done that. She has watched while Graf ousted Billie Jean King on the Grand Slam titles board, with the count at 15. Three more, and she is tied with Chris Evert and Navratilova. Ten more, and she is the all-time great. She is, after all, only 24.

Since Seles was injured in Hamburg in April, Graf, with bone fragments floating around in her left foot, has lost just three matches. The first was the final in Hamburg, a rather understandable lapse. The second was the first-round in Federation Cup, a no-points configuration. The third was the final of Philadelphia, Graf's first tournament back after foot surgery.

She had only lost three before that: the Australian Open final to Seles, the Pan Pacific Open the following week, when spirits were at their nadir, then the Lipton final two events later. How good is a player who loses only six matches in an entire season? Much better than in 1988, according to Graf. "The way I'm playing now is a step forward to the time in '88, there's no doubt about that. Competition has gotten stronger, so I have gotten stronger. I think today I proved it. There are more things than going for my shots that I can do. In '88 I was more limited."

The Grand Slammer. Limited. It is well past time to stop regarding Graf as merely the caretaker. It is insultingly churlish to keep pleading with Seles to come back and make a stoush of it. It is fitting only to marvel at possibly the greatest athlete the women's tennis world has produced.
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Old Apr 2nd, 2014, 09:19 PM   #3452
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Wooooooooooooow Finally, a journalist with brain.

Can't believe it, after all the previous articles.
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Old Apr 4th, 2014, 05:46 PM   #3453
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Quote:
Originally Posted by djul14 View Post
Wooooooooooooow Finally, a journalist with brain.

Can't believe it, after all the previous articles.
I know. So many of these same people who romanticized Monica's invincibility when she was absent and in the latter stages of her career and post-retirement also regularly criticized Monica for any number of things (some legitimate, some dubious) when she was playing.
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Old Apr 4th, 2014, 05:55 PM   #3454
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Might as well finish up early 1994. Here's what little I have from the Pan Pacific.

SPORTS DIGEST
Birmingham News
Alabama
Wednesday, February 2, 1994
Associated Press

TENNIS: Top-seeded Steffi Graf, fresh from winning the Australian Open, yesterday made short work of Iva Majoli of Croatia in the second round of the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo. Graf used a powerful first serve that included four aces to oust Majoli of Croatia in just 43 minutes on the artificial court of Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium. Second-seeded Martina Navratilova, defending champion, defeated Japan's Mana Endo 6-1, 6-3; third-seeded Gabriela Sabatini topped Japanese qualifier Kyoko Nagatsuka 6-4, 6-4, and sixth-seeded Manuela Maleeva-Fragniere of Switzerland ousted Dominique Monami of Belgium 6-2, 6-3.

At Marseille, France, Boris Becker returned to the circuit after a two-month layoff and showed no rustiness, beating Britain's Jeremy Bates 6-2, 6-4 in the first round of the $538,000 Marseille Open.
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Old Apr 4th, 2014, 05:59 PM   #3455
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Apologies for no accent marks. Steffi said she only had one day to adjust to the fast indoor surface.

BECKER REGRESA VICTORIOSO
El Nuevo Herald
Miami, FL
Wednesday, February 2, 1994
Servicios cablegraficos combinados

Marsella, Francia -- El tenista aleman Boris Becker, No. 13 a nivel mundial, que volvio a jugar el martes tras casi dos meses de ausencia, derroto sin problemas al ingles Jeremy Bates, 6-2, 6-4, en un partido del torneo de Marsella valido para el circuito ATP y dotado con $538,750 de premios.

Al lograr dos breaks en cada set, el aleman, que habia decidido no participar en el torneo internacional de Australia, jamas tuvo que emplearse a fondo para derrotar a un adversario que cometio numerosas faltas directas.

Becker, quien ahora tiene como entrenador a Nick Bollettieri, parecia haber bajado de peso y con mucha movilidad en el fondo de la cancha, aun cuando su porcentaje de primeras pelotas (50%), y seis dobles faltas le dejaron un sabor de insatisfaccion.

"No podia esperar estar en un estado fisico optimo. Ya es algo bueno estar aqui", explico 'Boum Boum' Becker quien no quiso pronunciarse acerca de su reciente polemica con los directivos del Circuito ATP como consecuencia de sus declaraciones sobre los controles antidoping.

"Ya ese caso esta cerrado. Ahora prefiero hablar de mi tenis", dijo el jugador.

Despues de haberse entrevistado la semana pasada con Mark Miles, director ejecutivo del Circuito ATP, Becker publico un comunicado en el que decia que no estaba "muy al tanto de los cambios que se produjeron en el programa antidoping del circuito ATP", y que entraron en vigencia en marzo de 1993.

* Tokio -- Steffi Graf, Martina Navratilova y Gabriela Sabatini el martes se apuntaron sendas victorias en sets corridos en la primera ronda del Abierto Panpacifico de tenis.

La alemana Graf (cabeza de serie No.1) vencio a la croata Iva Majoli 6-1, 6-0; la norteamericana Navratilova (2) a la japonesa Mana Endo 6-1, 6-3, y la argentina Sabatini (3) a la tambien japonesa Kyoko Nagatsuka 6-4, 6-4.

La bulgara Manuela Maleeva (6), por su parte, despacho a la belga Dominique Monami 6-2, 6-3.

Graf, quien acaba de ganar el Abierto Australiano, su cuarto torneo grande consecutivo, dijo sentirse "muy bien".

"Esta superficie se adapta a mi juego", indico.

Navratilova, quien gano este torneo el ano pasado, tampoco tuvo problemas, pero Sabatini debio empenarse un poco mas ante Nagatsuka.

"El primer partido de un torneo siempre es dificil", manifesto la argentina. "Ella jugo bien, no se equivoco mucho. Estoy satisfecha con mi desempeno".

En los restantes partidos, la china Fang Li derroto a la australiana Michelle Jaggard 6-0, 6-3; la alemana Marketa Kochta a la tambien australiana Nicole Provis 7-5, 6-4; la holandesa Manon Bollegraf a la estadounidense Kathy Rinaldi 6-3, 6-3, y la britanica Clare Wood a la taiwanesa Wang Shi-ting 6-1, 1-6, 7-5.

* Dubai, Emiratos Arabes Unidos -- El espanol Sergi Bruguera, cabeza de serie No.1, y el checo Petr Korda (No.3) tuvieron un comienzo dificil el martes en el torneo de tenis de Dubai, ante los italianos Stefano Pescosolido y Andrea Gaudenzi, quienes lograron arrebatarles un set.

Bruguera, cuarto jugador mundial, jugo desastrosamente despues de un brillante primer set, en el que solo dejo un juego a Pescosolido, 56 en el escalafon mundial.

El espanol, que mostro algunos signos de nerviosismo y muchas torpezas, permitio luego que su adversario igualara a un set, con un marcador tajante de 6-0.

Aprovechando su impulso, y gracias sobre todo a la potencia de sus reveses y a las aceleraciones en el fondo de la cancha, el italiano resistio la recuperacion de Bruguera.

Este ultimo, que anduvo mejor en las primeras pelotas, logro finalmente arrancar su clasificacion para la segunda vuelta, concluyendo el set decisivo por 6-3.

Por su parte, Petr Korda, 14to. jugador mundial, tuvo que disputar tres renidos sets (4-6, 7-5, 6-2) para deshacerse de Andre Gaudenzi, 73 en la clasificacion mundial.

* Auckland, Nueva Zelanda -- La tenista argentina Ines Gorrochategui, preclasificada No.4, logro el martes el pase a la segunda ronda del torneo de Auckland, valido para el circuito femenino y dotado de $100,000 en premios, al superar a la neozelandesa Julie Richardson por un contundente 6-2, 6-1.

Otros partidos de la fecha terminaron asi:

Individuales, primera vuelta: Karin Kschwendt (Alemania/ No.8) vencio a Jane Taylor (Australia), 6-2, 6-3; Emanuela Zardo (Suiza/No.6) a Caroline Vis (Holanda) 6-1, 2-6, 6-4; Jolene Watanabe (EU) a Alexandra Fusai (Francia/No.7) 7-5, 6-1; Noelle van Lottum (Francia) a Erika de Lone (EU) 6-4, 6-2;
Nicole Pratt (Australia) a Kristin Godridge (Australia) 6-2, 6-3; Anna Smashnova (Israel) a Barbara Schett (Australia) 6-7 (0/7), 6-4, 6-4; Veronika Martinek (Alemania) a Alexia Dechaume (Francia) 4-6, 6-2, 6-3; Misumi Miuauchi (Japon) a Maureen Drake (EU) 6-2, 6-1; Patricia Hy (Canada/N.2) a Joanette Kruger (Sudafrica) 6-2, 6-2.
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Old Apr 5th, 2014, 02:51 PM   #3456
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Graf wins despite trouble with fast surface
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Wednesday, February 2, 1994
Associated Press

TOKYO - Top-seeded Steffi Graf, despite struggling with her serve returns, beat Clare Wood of Britain 6-3, 6-4 today, to advance to the quarterfinals of the $750,000 Pan Pacific Open tennis tournament.

Graf said she needed more time to master the fast artificial surface at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium after playing on slower courts at the Australian Open, where she won her fourth consecutive Grand Slam title.

"She (Wood) served pretty well. She fired deep shots and it's difficult to return. I am not satisfied with today's game but I played well in general," Graf, ranked No. 1 in the world, said.

Second-seeded Martina Navratilova overcame Dutch qualifier Manon Bollegraf 6-7 (6-8), 6-2, 6-1 in another second-round match.

Caroline Kuhlman surprised Japan's Kimiko Date, the fifth seed, 4-6, 7-5, 7-5 in a first-round match that took two hours, 10 minutes.

Date was fined $750 yesterday after declining to attend a news conference.
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Old Apr 6th, 2014, 04:58 PM   #3457
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

So many pundits think Steffi was rooted to the baseline -- and Steffi herself either believed it or enjoyed cultivating the misconception.

Hy qualifies for semifinals with comeback Down Under Canadian loses her opening set, but storms back
The Toronto Star
Saturday, February 5, 1994
Associated Press

Second-seeded Patricia Hy of Richmond Hill shrugged off some early lethargy yesterday to advance to the semifinals of the Amway Classic women's hardcourt tennis championship in Auckland with a three-set victory over American Jolene Watanabe.

Watanabe took the first set 6-4, but then Hy's first serve improved and she dominated the next two sets, 6-0, 6-1.

Hy's next opponent will be third-seeded American Ginger Helgeson, who cruised to a 6-1, 6-1 victory over Germany's Veronika Martinek.

Top-seeded Julie Halard overcame a shaky serve to beat Israeli Anna Smashnova 6-3, 6-3 and advance against No. 4 seed Ines Gorrochategui of Argentina, who defeated South African Tessa Price 6-3, 6-3.

LAREAU WINS:

As Sebastien Lareau tells it, the ones you're supposed to win can be the most difficult.

Lareau, of Boucherville, Que., defeated Doug Burke of Jamaica in straight sets, 7-5, 6-2, 6-4, last night in Ottawa to take the opening singles match in the first round of American Zone Davis Cup tennis competition.

"I was very nervous," Lareau said of his numerous unforced errors in the first set.

"I think I did really well under the circumstances. We had everything to lose. We should be winning - should be winning easy."

Daniel Nestor of Toronto was to meet Jamaica's Karl Hale in the second singles match later last night as heavily favored Canada seeks to climb out of the international hinterland of Group 2 zone competition.

Canada, relegated to Group 2 of the American Zone last year, can't re-qualify for the top-16 World Group of Davis Cup competition until next year and can't compete in the elite group until 1996 at the earliest.

TENNIS LESSON:

Canadian teenager Jana Nejedly got a tennis lesson from the world's top player yesterday in Tokyo, dropping a 6-1, 6-1 decision to Germany's Steffi Graf in the quarterfinals of the Pan Pacific Open.

Graf, the top seed, needed only 42 minutes to defeat the 19-year-old from Richmond, B.C., who's ranked 307th in the world.

Graf, basically a baseline player, began going to the net in the fourth game of the second set.

"I tried to come in more than usual," said Graf. "Her backhand strokes were good, but her weak point was services."

Also advancing to the semifinals were second-seeded American Martina Navratilova, sixth- seeded Manuela Maleeva-Fragniere of Switzerland and Kristie Boogert of the Netherlands.

Navratilova, playing her final season of singles matches, beat Larisa Neiland of Latvia 6-4, 6-4. "This is my first tournament in six months, but I'm getting better. I served comfortably, and I could shoot groundstrokes firmly," Navratilova said.

SERIES EVEN:

Bjorn Borg defeated Mats Wilander 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 last night to even their best-of-three match exhibition tennis series in Lund, Sweden. Borg, 37, broke Wilander's serve in the ninth game of the third set to lead 5-4 and then easily held to close out the match in one hour and 50 minutes.
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Old Apr 7th, 2014, 05:17 PM   #3458
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Graf, Navratilova march into final
Houston Chronicle
Sunday, February 6, 1994
Houston Chronicle News Services

TOKYO -- Steffi Graf and Martina Navratilova won easy victories Saturday and will meet in the championship of the $750,000 Toray Pan Pacific Open tennis tournament.

Top-seeded Graf of Germany, the world's top-ranked female tennis player, needed just 55 minutes to beat Kristie Boogert of the Netherlands 6-2, 6-2 in the semifinals.

Second-seeded Navratilova, seeking her second consecutive victory in this tournament, needed just one hour to beat sixth-seeded Manuela Maleeva-Fragniere of Switzerland -- who is getting ready to retire -- 6-2, 6-3.

Stich suffers upset

Defending champion Marc Rosset of Switzerland upset top-seeded Michael Stich of Germany 6-2, 2-6, 6-4 in the semifinals of the $538,000 Marseille Open at Marseille, France.

Rosset was joined in the final by Frenchman Arnaud Boetsch, who beat Diego Nargiso of Italy 7-6 (7-3), 6-3.

Reneberg surprised

Sixth-seeded Renzo Furlan of Italy managed five service breaks and upset No. 2 seed Richey Reneberg 6-4, 6-4 in the semifinals of the San Jose Open at San Jose, Calif.

Furlan, who defeated three unseeded players to reach the semifinals, broke Reneberg three times in the first set and twice in the second.

Bruguera, Gustafsson to vie

Top-seeded Sergi Bruguera and No. 4 seed Magnus Gustafsson scored straight-set victories and will meet in the final of the $1 million Dubai Open at Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Bruguera beat No. 6 seed Wayne Ferreira of South Africa 6-2, 6-1 and Gustafsson defeated No. 8 seed Alexander Volkov of Russia 6-2, 6-2.

Wilander takes series with Borg

Mats Wilander beat Bjorn Borg 7-6 (7-4), 6-4 at Vaxjo, Sweden, in the deciding match of their best-of-three exhibition series
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Old Apr 8th, 2014, 03:48 PM   #3459
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

That's a ridiculous first serve percentage even if she were just spinning it in.

GRAF SERVES UP A STRAIGHT-SET VICTORY OVER NAVRATILOVA
The Buffalo News
Monday, February 7, 1994
From News Wire Services

TOKYO - A week after winning the Australian Open, Steffi Graf overwhelmed Martina Navratilova, 6-2, 6-4, Sunday in the championship of the Pan Pacific Open.

The 24-year-old Graf's powerful serves gave Navratilova little chance to play her serve-and-volley game. Graf made 82 percent of her first serves at speeds of up to 104 mph. Navratilova made just 66 percent.

"She served pretty well," the 37-year-old Navratilova said. "I played pretty well this week, but today I was not good as I would like as I made some errors."

The tournament was the first this year for Navratilova, who is in her final season in singles competition. Graf evened her record against Navratilova at 9-9.

Navratilova began the match on the artificial court of Tokyo Metropolitan Gym with an ace and won the first game at love. Graf won her first service game at love behind forehand winners.

Navratilova saw two break points slip away as Graf won the fourth game after four deuces. Navratilova got her second ace in the fourth game, but Graf broke. Graf also broke in the seventh game and won the eighth at love.

In the second set, Navratilova became erratic, hitting volleys and passing shots either long or wide. She double faulted twice as Graf broke in the fifth game.

"I served very steady, a lot of first serves in," Graf said.

In the doubles final, Pam Shriver and Elizabeth Smylie beat Navratilova and Manon Bollegraf 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7-3).

Chang upset in California

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Renzo Furlan, his game becoming more daring as the match wore on, upset Michael Chang, 3-6, 6-2, 7-5, Sunday night to win the San Jose Open, his first title on the tour.

"I'm in the sky right now," said Furlan, the No. 6 seed from Italy. "I can't believe I won."

Furlan, ranked 69th in the world, knocked off the top seed after defeating the No. 2 seed Richey Reneberg on Saturday. He earned $42,000 for the victory over the world's ninth-ranked player.

"I was nervous at first, playing Michael Chang in a

championship match and all," Furlan said. "Nothing was working. But I started feeling more comfortable in the second set and did a better job of coming to the net."

Chang of Henderson, Nev., defeated Furlan last year in their only previous meeting.

"He changed tactics after the first set," Chang said. "He started serving and volleying more, and it threw me off some. He picked my serve pretty well, too, and I didn't handle his well, even though his first serve often wasn't that fast."

Rosset prevails again

MARSEILLE, France -- Marc Rosset of Switzerland won his second consecutive Marseille Open by beating Arnaud Boetsch, 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (7-4).

Rosset, seeded fourth, and Boetsch, seeded fifth, each fought off break points.

It was the seventh ATP Tour title for Rosset, who won the 1992 Olympic gold medal. He won tournaments last year at Moscow, Long Island and Marseille.

Gustafsson defeats Bruguera

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- Magnus Gustafsson beat

top-seeded Sergi Bruguera, 6-4, 6-2, to win the Dubai Open.

The Swede, ranked 12th, utilized cross-court shots to push the Spaniard back to the baseline. Gustafsson broke for a 5-4 lead in the first set, then served out with a forehand passing shot. Bruguera, the favorite to win the title, continued to commit unforced errors in the second set.

"I think it has to do with my concentration," Gustafsson said. "I was watching the ball and was not prone to committing too many errors while Bruguera was, I think, too much under pressure."

Helgeson wins her first

AUCKLAND, New Zealand -- Ginger Helgeson won the first title of her professional tennis career, beating Ines Gorrochategui, 7-6 (7-4), 6-3, in the final of the Amway Classic.

The third-seeded Helgeson and her fourth-seeded opponent traded service breaks three times in the first set. Gorrochategui, who won a three-set semifinal against top-seeded Julie Halard, began to tire and lost the tie-breaker, 7-4.

Helgeson took a 5-0 lead in the second set but Gorrochategui broke Helgeson's serve twice before the American clinched victory.

Sargsian wins collegiate title

DALLAS -- Sargis Sargsian of Arizona State used a powerful serve to overpower Paul Robinson of Texas Christian, 6-3, 6-3, Sunday for the men's singles championship at the National Intercollegiates.

Sargsian, the No. 4 seed, didn't drop a set in five matches.

JAPAN, TAIWAN MOVE ON

BEIJING - Japan romped to a 5-0 victory over China in Davis Cup action while Taiwan came from 2-1 down to win the final two singles and oust Malaysia 3-2.

Their team already sure of advancing to the first round of Asia-Oceania Zone Group I, Japan's Shuzo Matsuoka and Yasufumi Yamamoto won their best-of-three singles matches in straight sets.

Matsuoka downed Xia Jai Ping 6-4, 6-0 and Yamamoto had a 6-4, 7-5 victory over Pan Bing.

Facing defeat before their own fans at Taichung, the Taiwanese singles players Chih-Jung Chen and Yu-Hui Lien both gained straight-set victories to overturn Malaysia's lead in Asia-Oceania Group ll.
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Old Apr 8th, 2014, 03:50 PM   #3460
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Navratilova demolished as Graf cruises to another title
February 7, 1994
The Age

Tokyo, Sunday - Reigning world No.1 Steffi Graf today demolished Martina Navratilova to win the singles title at the Toray Pan Pacific Open tennis tournament.

The 24-year-old German, continuing her match-winning streak that has included the Virginia Slims Championship and the Australian Open, notched her third straight title with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Navratilova, the defending champion.

The first set was closer than the score suggests, with Navratilova gaining three break points and Graf four. It was Graf who converted the breaks to take the set.

The 37-year-old veteran Navratilova, in her last competitive season, put up less resistance in the second set, double-faulting twice to give Graf an early break.

Graf, on the other hand, landed 82.75 per cent of her first serves and was never threatened on her own service.

The win, worth $210,700, was sweet revenge for Graf who lost to Navratilova in the semi-finals here last year. The career record of the two now stands at nine-all in major tournaments.

IN DUBAI, Magnus Gustafsson, his concentration enhanced by transcendental meditation, blasted Alexander Volkov aside 6-2, 6-2 to reach the final of the $1.4million Dubai Open.

The fourth-seeded Swede will meet No.1 seed Sergi Bruguera of Spain, who won the other semi-final 6-2, 6-1 against South African Wayne Ferreira.

Gustafsson was in command from the start and Volkov had no answer to his powerful serves and cross-court shots.

``I feel full of energy these days and meditation twice a day for 20 minutes helps me concentrate much better," Gustafsson, ranked 12th in the world, said.

SWITZERLAND'S Marc Rosset beat top seed Michael Stich 6-2, 2-6, 6-4 to reach the Marseille Open indoor final.

He will meet Frenchman Arnaud Boetsch, who beat Italy's Diego Nargiso 7-6, 6-3 in the other semi-final.

MATS WILANDER beat Bjorn Borg in two straight sets in Vaxjo, Sweden, to win their best-of-three match exhibition series.

Wilander, 29, who reached the fourth round in last month's Australian Open, won 7-6 (7-4), 6-4 before a boisterous hometown crowd.
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Old Apr 8th, 2014, 03:51 PM   #3461
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

STEFFI GRAF VENCE SIN APUROS A NAVRATILOVA
El Nuevo Herald
Miami, FL
Monday, February 7, 1994
Agence France Presse Servicios cablegraficos combinados

Tokio --(AFP)-- Con comodidad la alemana Steffi Graf, numero uno de la clasificacion mundial de tenis, vencio el domingo a la veterana Martina Navratilova en la final del torneo de Tokio --valido por el circuito y con $750,000 en premios-- en dos sets 6-2, 6-4.

La alemana, de 24 anos y que viene de ganar en noviembre el Masters y en enero el Abierto Australiano (primer Grand Slam de la temporada), no dejo el domingo ninguna oportunidad a Navratilova, quien con 37 anos no solo era la ultima ganadora de este torneo, sino que ademas aun permanece en los primeros puestos mundiales.

A pesar de la resistencia de la checa nacionalizada estadounidense --y que este ano afronta su ultima temporada en individuales-- Graf gano la primera manga por 6-2. En la segunda Navratilova cometio dos dobles faltas, aunque dio mas lucha, pero finalmente cayo 6-4.

Graf tuvo una eficacia del 82.75 por ciento en sus pelotas de primer servicio. "Era muy importante para mi tener un buen servicio e impedirle (a Navratilova) que pudiese subir a la red", explico Graf despues de recibir el trofeo.

Navratilova, por su parte, reconocio la superioridad de su rival. "Tuve un buen juego esta semana, pero hoy (domingo) no me desempene tan bien como hubiese querido. Cometi errores en los cuales por lo general no caigo, y creo que debo atribuirlos a la presion que Steffi hizo durante todo el match".

Dubai, Emiratos Arabes Unidos -- El sueco Magnus Gustafsson vencio el domingo en dos sets al espanol Sergi Bruguera y gano el campeonato abierto de tenis de Dubai.

El sueco, clasificado 12do. en el escalafon mundial y cuarto cabeza de serie en este torneo, vencio a Bruguera por 6-4, 6-2 al adjudicarse un primer premio de $144,000.

Gustafsson vencio al norteamericano y quinto cabeza de serie Ivan Lendl en los cuartos de final de este torneo, dotado con $1 millon en premios, despues que su rival se retiro en el tercer set debido a una dolencia nerviosa en la espalda.

En la semifinal se midio con el ruso Alexander Volkov, que se anoto el segundo set pero perdio el tercero por 5-7.

Bruguera vencio en tres sets en las semifinales al sudafricano Weyne Ferreira.

Marsella -- El tenista suizo Marc Rosset, preclasificado No.4, se adjudico el domingo por segundo ano consecutivo el Torneo de Marsella, que otorgo puntos para la ATP y $538,750 en premios, al imponerse en un match muy disputado frente al frances Arnaud Boetsch, cabeza de serie No.5, por 7-6 (8/6) y 7-6 (7/4).

Rosset, en el puesto 17 de la clasificacion mundial, sumo asi a su titulo olimpico logrado en los Juegos de Barcelona 92, su septimo torneo ATP (Ginebra, Lyon, Moscu, tambien en dos oportunidades, Marsella y Long Island).

Con dos ases en el comienzo del match, el suizo anuncio cual iba a ser el nivel del juego a venir, pero Boetsch hizo valer su regularidad para demostrar que contaba con argumentos como para pelear el resultado.

Sin embargo el frances poco pudo hacer para encontrar una respuesta adecuada a los explosivos servicios del gigante suizo. Autor de 49 ases desde el inicio del torneo, Rosset se mantuvo en su senda triunfal, mientras su rival se debatia entre la falta de precision de sus devoluciones y numerosas faltas directas que minaron su trabajo de zapa.

Fue precisamente una doble falta la que le hizo perder el tie break (8-6) del primer set.

En el siguiente capitulo, aunque Boetsch mantuvo su empuje, Rosset supo recuperarse rapidamente cuando la situacion se volvia comprometedora y revertir el resultado siempre con sus impactantes ases.

La fuerza del suizo volvio a resultar decisiva en la definicion del segundo tie break.
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Old Apr 9th, 2014, 06:58 PM   #3462
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Family Circle Cup 1989, Hilton Head, South Carolina.

New-look Family Circle
Lexington Herald-Leader (
Saturday, April 1, 1989
Associated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The 17th edition of the Family Circle Magazine Cup tennis tournament has a new, spruced-up look.

The seats have been repainted after criticism by Martina Navratilova about the glare. The courts have been resurfaced and hundreds of shrubs and trees have been planted.

"There is no way -- unless they've gone blind -- that they can't notice a difference," said Gale Smyly, landscaping department director for Sea Pines Plantation. "The difference is like night and day."

The $300,000 tournament begins this weekend with qualifying matches on the clay courts at the Sea Pines Racquet Club on Hilton Head Island. The tournament will feature 56 of the top woman players in the world, led by Steffi Graf, the world's No. 1 player.

Thirty-two players will compete in qualifying matches for eight spots in the tournament, which begins Monday with opening-round action and culminates with the championship April 9 at the 5,600-seat facility.

The most noticeable difference for Navratilova and her fellow players as they walk out on center court will be that the white-backed box seats are now dark blue, having been repainted to cut down on the glare.

After winning the 1988 tournament, Navratilova complained that she had a hard time seeing the ball when looking into the north stands, threatening to bypass this year's tournament if changes weren't made.
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Old Apr 9th, 2014, 07:00 PM   #3463
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

LATE-ROUNDS SELLOUT MARKS CUP'S GROWTH
The State
Columbia, SC
Sunday, April 2, 1989
BOB COLE, Senior Writer

For the first time in its 17-year history, the Family Circle Magazine Cup at Hilton Head Island's Sea Pines Plantation has sold out all available seats for the semifinals and finals prior to the start of the tournament.

Sea Pines Publicity director Arnie Burdick says that 200 seats have been added to the Stadium Court, and all 5,900 seats are sold for Saturday's and Sunday's matches. The semifinals and finals will be televised by NBC.

"We had record (ticket) sales last year, and we're already ahead of that this year," said Burdick. "You can still get good seats on a daily basis Monday through Friday, but the weekend matches are sold out."

Burdick also reported that the Metropolitan Life blimp, which was used at last year's Super Bowl, will be at Hilton Head this week and will be used for aerial shots of Family Circle matches as well as the following week for the Heritage Golf Classic.

Qualifying for the final eight spots took place this weekend, with tournament play beginning Monday. The field includes the No. 1- and No. 2- ranked players in the world, Steffi Graf and Martina Navratilova, who will be seeded one and two, respectively. Burdick reported that Navratilova arrived early last week and began daily practices on Sea Pines' clay courts.

The likely No. 3 seed is Soviet sensation Natalia Zvereva, ranked eighth in the world. Zina Garrison, ranked ninth, probably will get the No. 4 seeding. The field also includes Hana Mandlikova, the former U.S., French and two-time Australian Open winner attempting to bounce back from a hamstring injury and currently ranked 24th.
Olympic bronze medalist Brad Gilbert was the first name in the 32-player field for the U. S. Clay Courts championship at Wild Dunes Resort next month.

Tickets can be purchased at the Gaillard Auditorium Box Office in Charleston or by visiting any SCAT outlet. To order tickets by telephone, call 577-4500.

Myrtle Beach's Will Bull, ranked No. 1 nationally in the boys' 16-and-under division, was beaten by seventh-seeded Michael Joyce of Los Angeles in the quarterfinals of the Omega Easter Bowl Junior Championships' 18-and-under division last week. Bull was seeded fifth.

Bull is a member of the 15-player U.S. National Team, which will compete in national and international tournaments for the remainder of the calendar year. The team is sponsored by the United States Tennis Association and is an effort to improve the capabilities of junior players in this country.

ESPN will have live coverage of the Davis Cup quarterfinal tie between France and the United States from San Diego next weekend. The first two singles matches will be televised Friday beginning at 7:30 p.m. with the doubles slated for Saturday at 8 p.m. Sunday's matches will begin at 4:30 p.m.

Cliff Drysdale, in his 10th year of tennis commentary for ESPN, will call the play-by-play. Fred Stolle and Roscoe Tanner will provide analysis.

John McEnroe and Andre Agassi will play singles for the U.S., and Ken Flach and Robert Seguso will team in the doubles.
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Old Apr 9th, 2014, 07:03 PM   #3464
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

NAVRATILOVA DEFENDS HILTON HEAD TITLE
The Charlotte Observer
Monday, April 3, 1989
RICK BARGER, Staff Writer

Martina Navratilova defends her championship and tries to take home the title for the fourth time as the Family Circle Magazine Cup tennis tournament begins today at the Sea Pines Racquet Club on Hilton Head Island, S.C.

She`ll have a tough task since two-time champion and the world`s top-ranked player, Steffi Graf, is also entered.

With the potential matchup of Navratilova and Graf in next Sunday`s clay-court final, ticket sales have been brisk. So brisk that Saturday`s semifinals and the final already are sold out for the approximately 5,900 seats.

``We`ve had record sales this year,`` said tournament spokesman Arnie Burdick. ``They`re way ahead of last year, which was a record.``

Seating capacity was 5,200 last year.

But Burdick also said tickets for the other days are available.

Missing from the field are Chris Evert and Gabriela Sabatini, who faced each other in Saturday`s singles final of the International Players Championships in Key Biscayne, Fla. Sabatini won 6-1, 4-6, 6-2.

Navratilova, who is ranked No. 2 in the world but hasn`t won a tournament since November`s Virginia Slims of Chicago, beat Sabatini 6-1, 4-6, 6-4 to win the Family Circle Cup last year.

Graf, winner of the last five Grand Slam tournaments, skipped last year`s Family Circle Cup, after winning the title in 1986 and `87.

Graf and Navratilova get byes in today`s round and begin play Tuesday.

Among the challengers trying to win their first Family Circle title are Zina Garrison, Natalia Zvereva, Lori McNeil, Helen Kelesi, Arantxa Sanchez, Hana Mandlikova, Sandra Cecchini, Catarina Lindqvist and Raffaella Reggi. All are ranked in the top 25 in the world.

Eight made the 56-player field through weekend qualifying. They are Regina Marsikova, Andrea Temesvari, Amanda Coetzer, Clare Wood, Regina Rajchrtova, Adriana Villagran, Christine Damas, and Mary Pierce.

Also in contention for the title will be Hendersonville teenager Kim Kessaris, who was one of three wild-card entries admitted to the tournament. She faces 12th-seed Reggi in today`s opener.

Kessaris, winner of the Australian Junior title, won two singles matches in the Australian Open before being eliminated in the third round by Garrison.

For ticket information, contact the Sea Pines Racquet Club at (803) 671-2448 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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Old Apr 10th, 2014, 03:39 PM   #3465
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

GRAF, NAVRATILOVA STRUGGLE EARLY BUT STILL WIN
The Charlotte Observer
Wednesday, April 5, 1989
From Associated Press Reports

Top-seeded Steffi Graf and No. 2 Martina Navratilova struggled in the early going before notching victories Tuesday in the second round of the Family Circle Magazine Cup tennis tournament at Sea Pines Racquet Club.

Graf, the top-ranked women`s player in the world, defeated Rosalyn Fairbank 6-4, 6-3.

Navratilova was extended to three sets before defeating Laura Gildemeister 6-4, 4-6, 6-0.

No. 3 Zina Garrison withdrew from the competition Tuesday. She suffered a groin pull against Chris Evert during the International Players Championships last week.

The only seeded player to lose was No. 12 Raffaella Reggi, who fell to Jana Pospisilova 7-5, 6-4.

Graf`s match with Fairbank lasted 76 minutes under a hot midday sun. Graf fell behind 4-3 in the first set before taking three straight games.

Graf, 19, double-faulted to end the sixth game of the second set and allow Fairbank to draw even at 3-3.

But Graf then rattled off three straight to take the set and the match.

``The first match is a little tougher than usual, and you`re not as patient,`` said Graf, who had a bye in the first round on Monday.

``Rosalyn was playing really well. She kept the ball in play, and I really didn`t have the rhythm.``

Graf, who hasn`t lost a match this year, said she was a little anxious.

``I just have to be a little patient. I`ve played well so far. I try to take everybody seriously,`` she said.

Graf didn`t play in the tournament last year. Navratilova is the defending tournament champion.

``I played one bad set, one mediocre set and one good set,`` Navratilova said of her match. ``I was a little nervous, playing my first match in five weeks, playing on clay, and it got a little windy. I was a little tentative on my return of serve, and I was running around a lot.''

Gildemeister broke Navratilova`s serve in the final game of the second set to win the set. Navratilova responded by winning two straight games to open the third set.

It appeared Gildemeister might climb back into the match in the third game, which went to deuce six times.

At one point during the game, Navratilova broke her racket in the clay trying to return a volley at the baseline and tossed it into the stands.

Navratilova won the game when Gildemeister returned a volley wide of the sideline. She then breezed through the last three games.

In other second-round action Tuesday, No. 4 seed Natalia Zvereva defeated Wendy White 6-1, 6-2 and No. 10 Catarina Lindqvist beat Camille Benjamin 3-6, 6-4, 6-1.

No. 7 Arantxa Sanchez defeated Wendy White 6-1, 6-2.

Other winners Tuesday included Linda Ferrando, Regina Rajchrtova and Karen Schimper. Shaun Stafford defeated Donna Faber 4-6, 7-5, 6-4 in the continuation of a first-round match suspended Monday because of darkness.
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