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9,514 Posts
Wednesday, January 29, 1986
Jim Sarni

The Virginia Slims of Florida should seek different corporate sponsors next year.

Instead of a beer company or an ice cream bar, the tournament organizers should sign up a good ear muff firm or a hot chocolate maker.

For the second consecutive year, the women's tournament has turned into the Brrr-ginia Slims of Florida.

While the palm trees shivered Tuesday, the linespeople put on mittens, the spectators showed up in fur coats and the players wore warmups.

Even the most notorious chokers played with ice water in their veins.

A bright sun made daytime conditions tolerable - Carling Bassett went for a swim - but when the light faded, the tournament raced inside for a warm blanket and a cozy fireplace.

The night session was canceled, frozen in time. Chris Evert Lloyd will play her first match tonight.

"It was so nice last week. It just gets cold for this tournament," said Susan Mascarin, who moved from Detroit to Boca Raton two years ago to escape cold weather.

Mascarin came prepared for her match against Diane Balestrat Fromholtz Tuesday. She brought a sweater and pants.

Mascarin also brought a winning game. The 21-year-old baseliner turned back the Australian 6-2, 7-6 (8-6) to advance to the third round.

"It wasn't as bad as I thought," said Mascarin, who stripped down to a short-sleeved top and her skirt by the end of the match.

Mascarin, who beat Etsuko Inoue Monday, is on a hot streak with her first back-to-back victories since September. She will try to make it three in a row against the winner of tonight's match between Gabriela Sabatini and Annabel Croft.

Winning used to be a habit for Mascarin when she was a junior. In 1980, she was the best junior in the world.

But Mascarin has had trouble hitting big-league pitching. At 14 she won the Southern Championships, a satellite event, defeating Renee Richards in the final, but has reached only one final since, losing to Evert in Atlanta.

"Since I was 12, I was used to winning, then I turned pro and started losing," said Mascarin, ranked No.48 on the computer after dropping as low as No. 130 two years ago.

"I wasn't used to losing. It surprised me. I had to learn how to lose. I didn't handle losing very well."

Every defeat seemed like the end of the world.

"I hated to call my parents after a loss," Mascarin said. "It was the worst thing in the world. My self-esteem went way down after a loss. I had to realize that losing doesn't reflect on me as a person.

"It got very frustrating and I threatened to quit many times but, of course, I never meant it. Now I'm handling it better. I'm not quite so emotional. I'm reacting to things better and trying to be more professional. A lot of it is growing up."

At 21, Mascarin is hardly a has-been.

"I was only 16 when I turned pro," she said. "All the agents were after me and turning pro was the thing to do. If I had been 18, I think I would have gone to college. My non-tennis friends are just getting out of college now and they don't know what they're going to do for a career.

"I've played pro tennis for five years. I've accomplished something. And I've gained experience. I enjoy what I'm doing. I'm traveling, meeting a lot of people and making money. But personally, I'm not satisfied with what I've done and I want to get better."

Mascarin has a new coach - Gordon O'Reilly, a Boca Raton teaching pro who took over from Stefan Dehner this month - and a positive attitude.

"I'm working hard at my tennis," she said. "I know if I don't work hard, I don't deserve to win.

"I put a lot of pressure on myself when I turned pro. I expected to do better. I heard I was supposed to be great. Now we'll see."

9,514 Posts
Jordan takes 'one good step' on comeback trail
The Toronto Star
Wednesday, January 29, 1986

Kathy Jordan took what she called "one good step" in her comeback from a knee injury with a hard-fought, 7-5, 7-5, victory over Anne Hobbs of Great Britain yesterday in the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida tournament at Key Biscayne.

Jordan said the unseasonably cold weather, though an annoyance, wasn't really a problem during her afternoon match.

But tournament organizers decided to cancel the night matches, including the first appearance of top-seeded Chris Evert Lloyd, because temperatures were expected to drop into the low 40s (F).

In the only other first-round match yesterday involving a seeded player, No. 14 Jo Durie of Great Britain downed Katerina Maleeva of Bulgaria, 6-2, 7-6 (7-5).

Fourth-seeded Bonnie Gadusek, who had a first-round bye, ripped Christiane Jolissaint of Switzerland, 6-2, 6-2, and 10th-seeded Andrea Temesvari whipped Tine Scheuer-Larsen of Denmark, 6-3, 6-3, in second-round matches.

Jordan was seeded 11th in the tournament at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne resort based on her performance over the past year. She hasn't been playing like a seeded player lately, however.

In the past two weeks, she lost in the first round of Virginia Slims events in Worcester, Mass., and in Wichita, Kan. She admits she might have tried to come back too soon from the knee sprain she suffered at the New South Wales tournament last year, but it wouldn't have been in character for the fiery Jordan to be patient.

"It's frustrating for me because some people can come back so quickly, but it seems to take me a long time," Jordan said.

Jordan wasn't happy with her inconsistent performance, but compared with her play of the past two weeks, it was encouraging.

"Today was a lot of progress," she said. "It was one good step in my comeback."

The other first-round winners yesterday were Kathleen Horvath, Anna Maria Cecchini of Italy, Janine Thompson of Australia, Marie Christine Calleja of France, Annie Minter of Australia and Catherine Tanvier of France.

Susan Mascarin beat Diane Fromholtz Balestrat of Australia, 6-2 7-6 (8-6), in a second-round match.

* Unseeded Leonardo Lavalle of Mexico upset No. 3 seed Stefan Edberg of Sweden, 1-6, 6-4, 7-5, yesterday to advance to the third round of the $465,000 U.S. Pro Indoor Championships at Philadelphia.

Earlier yesterday, Slobodan Zivojinovic, a strong-armed Yugoslav, upset No. 15 seed David Pate, 6-4, 6-7 (5-7), 6-3, in another second-round match.

Lavalle, the Wimbledon junior title holder, defeated Edberg, a member of Sweden's Davis Cup team, with superior serves and volleys in 1 hour, 58 minutes.

9,514 Posts
Lendl, Connors advance in U.S. Pro
Houston Chronicle
Thursday, January 30, 1986
Houston Chronicle News Services

PHILADELPHIA - Ivan Lendl and Jimmy Connors easily won their first matches in the $465,000 U.S. Pro Indoor Championships.

Lendl, the top player in the world and No. 1 seed, defeated Robert Seguso 6-2, 6-2 and No. 2 Connors beat Guy Forget 6-3, 6-4 on Wednesday. Both players had first-round byes.

Earlier, No. 5 Anders Jarryd advanced to the round of 16 with a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Matt Anger; No. 14 Jan Gunnarsson was beaten by Jakob Hlasek 6-2, 6-3, and No. 16 Greg Holmes defeated Libor Pimek 6-2, 6-4.

Lendl, who entered the tournament after defending champion John McEnroe dropped out, broke Seguso twice in the first set and fought off three break points in the sixth game, the only time he was threatened.

Seguso, one of the best doubles players in the world, again lost his serve twice in the second set, on a double-fault in the fifth game and on a forehand shot that was long in the seventh. Lendl held his serve at love to win the match.

Jarryd took 1 hour and 11 minutes to beat Anger, never losing serve and breaking Anger twice in each set.

Evert Lloyd scores easy win

KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. - Top-seeded Chris Evert Lloyd easily defeated Petra Huber of Austria 6-2, 6-1 to advance to the third round of the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida tournament.

Evert Lloyd needed only 74 minutes to dispatch of Huber, who was unseeded.

In the other featured night match, sixth-seeded Gabriela Sabatini of Argentina whipped Annabel Croft of Great Britain 6-0, 6-1.

Earlier Wednesday, Kathleen Horvath of Largo, Fla., came from behind to upset seventh-seeded Catarina Lindgvist 4-6, 6-1, 6-3.

Horvath had lost in the first round of her last six tournaments dating back to July before winning her initial match Tuesday and defeating Sweden's Lindgvist yesterday.

Second-seeded Steffi Graf of West Germany topped Alycia Moulton of Sacramento, Calif., 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 and third-seeded Manuela Maleeva of Bulgaria defeated Janine Thompson of Australia 4-6, 6-3, 6-2.

Fifth-seeded Kathy Rinaldi of Martin Downs, Fla., defeated Marie Christine Calleja of France 7-5, 6-1, and eighth-seeded Wendy Turnbull of Australia topped Anna Ivan of La Jolla, Calif., 2-6, 6-4, 6-2.

Ninth-seeded Carling Bassett of Canada defeated Larissa Savchenko of the Soviet Union, 6-2, 6-4, 11th-seeded Kathy Jordan coasted past Catherine Tanvier of France, 6-1, 6-4, and 14th-seeded Jo Durie of Great Britain beat Anne Minter of Australia 6-2, 6-3.

9,514 Posts
Confident Graf Tops Moulton
The Palm Beach Post
January 30, 1986
Jeff Snook

Key Biscayne -- The way Steffi Graf figured it, there was no way Alycia Moulton was going to beat her last night.

Even following the first set, which Moulton won easily with her effective serve-and-volley game, Graf thought Moulton wouldn't maintain her level of play.

She was right. The 16-year-old Graf, seeded second, got her powerful forehand in gear and rallied to beat Moulton 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 in the second round of the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne.

"She was serving quite well in the first set," said West Germany's Graf, the world's No. 6-ranked player. "She was doing everything right and it's really hard to keep that up. I thought she would start making some mistakes."

Moulton did and Graf avoided an upset to join 11 other seeded players who advanced to the third round.

In matches involving other seeded players yesterday, No. 1 Chris Evert Lloyd had no problem with Petra Huber in a 6-2, 6-1 victory; third seeded Manuela Maleeva of Bulgaria outlasted Australia's Janine Thompson 4-6, 6-3, 6-3; fifth-seeded Kathy Rinaldi of Stuart beat France's Marie Christine Calleja 7-5, 6-1, and sixth-seeded Gabriela Sabatini of Argentina routed Great Britain's Annabel Croft 6-0, 6-1.

Also, Largo's Kathleen Horvath upset seventh-seeded Catarina Lindqvist of Sweden 4-6, 6-1, 6-3; No 9-seed Carling Bassett eliminated Larissa Savchenko of the Soviet Union 6-2, 6-4; eighth-seeded Wendy Turnbull rallied to defeat Anna Ivan 2-6, 6-4, 6-2; and 14-year-old Mary Joe Fernandez of Miami upset Michelle Torres 6-3, 6-3.

After taking a 2-0 lead in the second set against Graf, Moulton's powerful serve abandoned her and her volleys suddenly started to miss.

"She still made it a very tough match for me," Graf explained. "I haven't played any tournament for the last three months but I was still confident."

The Moulton-Graf match and the Evert-Huber match were postponed from Tuesday night because of cold weather.

"I said 'Oh, no,' when I heard I wasn't going to play [Tuesday]," said Graf, playing her first tournament since the Porsche Grand Prix in Filderstadt, West Germany in October. "I was practicing well and I felt great and I wanted to play then.

"I don't really like playing somebody like that because she can play really well or not so good."

Moulton gave Graf a little of both.

The 15-year-old Sabatini, on the other hand, never looked better, taking only 55 minutes to brush Croft aside. She was even more fluid and accurate than when she emerged on the tour with five consecutive victories and reached the final at Hilton Head, S.C. last April and the semifinals of the French Open in June.

When Croft would come to the net, Sabatini, ranked no. 12, would either pass down the line or lob accurately. When Croft stayed on the baseline, Sabatini would serve-and-volley successfully.

She won the first eight games of the match before Croft held service.

"I feel if I move my legs more and improve my net game," Sabatini said, "I can still play better."

"When the important points came up," Croft said, "she would win them."

Evert, the tournament's defending champion, lost the first game of her match with Huber and sometimes had trouble with her serve. But most of the time she was her usual dominating self.

"I am happy with the score even though I was a little rusty at first," said Evert, who played her first match since the Australian Open in November.

"I am always relieved to get that first match of the year out of the way. And since I am from down here, I feel a little more pressure because it's my hometown."

Evert said she is making an adjustment on her serve which resulted in three double-faults.

"I am trying to lean in a little more and go to the net or go in after I serve," she said. "And anytime you are trying to change something, you have some problems with it."

9,514 Posts
The Miami Herald
Thursday, January 30, 1986

Five years from now, when the Martina Navratilova-Chris Evert Lloyd show has finished its run, the odds are that Steffi Graf and Gabriela Sabatini will be showcasing their tennis battles around the world.

Navratilova, 29, and Evert, 31, have occupied center stage in women's tennis for the past decade. The show is not over, but the lights are dimming on one of sport's longest-running rivalries.

Graf and Sabatini, both 16 and ranked among the world's top dozen players, demonstrated their talents Wednesday before 3,000 chilled spectators at the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne on Key Biscayne.

Graf, the No. 2 seed, started slowly before topping Alycia Moulton, 3-6, 6-4, 6-1, to advance to the third round. Sabatini, using her superior athletic skill, outclassed Ann Croft, 6-0, 6-1, in 55 minutes.

Neither teen-ager looked tired after her match and neither wanted to talk about taking over for the reigning queens of tennis.

"The young girls are getting closer to matching the top players, but it takes time and experience to get that high," said Graf, sixth in the world in the latest Women's Tennis Association rankings. "I'm not looking forward to playing at Chrissie or Martina's level yet. They are still ahead of some of us."

Graf may have been speaking for Petra Huber, who easily fell to Evert in 74 minutes, 6-2, 6-1. Evert, playing in her first tournament since losing in December to Navratilova in the final of the Australian Open, dominated the match with her usual baseline game.

Navratilova pulled out of the tournament with the flu.

"They (Graf and Sabatini) both are very mature beyond their years and both have the shots to be champions," said Evert, the tournament's top seed. "I know they are tough on the court, but psychologically, they are not the same."

They may not be the same, but Sabatini's performance moved her a step closer to the limelight that has been projected for her since she first appeared on the WTA computer two years ago with a ranking of 72. She currently is ranked 12th.

"I'm not too concerned right now with trying to catch Chris or Martina; I'm trying to catch the people right in front of me," said Sabatini, who captured her first pro title last year by winning the Japan Open. "I need to improve my own game by moving my legs more. There is a lot of hard work ahead."

Graf will meet another upcoming teen-ager, 14-year-old Mary Joe Fernandez, in one of today's early matches on the stadium court. Sabatini will face Susan Mascarin before the Graf- Fernandez match.

Earlier in the day, Kathleen Horvath of Largo, Fla., came from behind to upset seventh-seeded Catarina Lindqvist, 4-6, 6-1, 6-3.

Wednesday's results


Chris Evert Lloyd d. Petra Huber, 6-2, 6-1; Gabriela Sabatini d. Annabel Croft, 6-0, 6-1; Kathleen Horvath d. Catarina Lindqvist, 4-6, 6-1, 6-3; Steffi Graf d. Alycia Moulton, 3-6, 6-4, 6-1; Manuela Maleeva d. Janine Thompson, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2; Kathy Rinaldi d. Marie Christine Calleja, 7-5, 6-1; Wendy Turnbull d. Anna Ivan, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2; Carling Bassett d. Larissa Savchenko, 6-2, 6-4; Kathy Jordan d. Catherine Tanvier, 6-1, 6-4; Jo Durie d. Anne Minter, 6-2, 6-3; Stephanie Rehe d. Debbie Spence, 6-1, 6-2; Mary Joe Fernandez d. Michelle Torres, 6-3, 6-3; Anna Maria Cecchini d. Angeliki Kanollopoulou, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3.

Today's schedule

Stadium court: 10:30 a.m. -- Kathleen Horvath vs. Andrea Temesvari; Jo Durie vs. Bonnie Gadusek; Susan Mascarin vs. Gabriela Sabatini; Mary Joe Fernandez vs. Steffi Graf; Ann Croft-Kathleen Horvath vs. Betsy Nagelsen-Barbara Potter.

Stadium court: 6 p.m. -- Kathy Jordan-Elizabeth Smylie vs. Steffi Graf-Catherine Tanvier; Chris Evert Lloyd vs. Carling Bassett; Penny Barg-Leigh Thompson vs. Carling Bassett-Rosalyn Fairbanks.

Court 1: 11 a.m. -- Stephanie Rehe vs. Kathy Rinaldi; Kathy Jordan vs. Manuela Maleeva; Jo Durie-Anne Hobbs vs. Lilian Drescher-Christiane Jolissaint; Susan Mascarin-Terry Phelps vs. Mercedes Paz-Kim Sands.

Court 3: 11 a.m. -- Wendy Turnbull vs. Anna Maria Cecchini; Catarina Lindqvist-Joanne Russell vs. Isabelle Demongeot-Ann Tauziat.

9,514 Posts
Thursday, January 30, 1986
Jim Sarni

Another Opening Night. Another year for Chris Evert Lloyd.

Don't ask her if it's her last. She doesn't know.

Chris Evert Lloyd is 31 now and she's going to play until she's ready to stop.

"Last year, I was so concerned about everyone asking me when I was going to retire," said Evert after raising the curtain on 1986 with a 6-2, 6-1 victory over Petra Huber at the Virginia Slims of Florida Wednesday night at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne.

"I got the feeling that if I didn't do it now, I'd never do it. This year I'm going to be easygoing and relax. All the retirement talk is a distraction. I don't blame people for asking. Years ago, I said I was going to retire when I was 30 and now I'm 31.

"Physically, I feel I can easily play until I'm 35. It's just a matter of when I want to stop and start a family. I don't know. I just know that I'm not going to be uptight about it."

If Evert learned anything from last year and her season-ending defeat to Martina Navratilova at the Australian Open, it is that she has to relax to play her best tennis.

"Against Martina, I let the pressure get to me," Evert said of the loss that cost her the No. 1 ranking for the season. "She is the only person I get nervous playing. Emotionally, I want to beat her more than anyone because beating her would make me happier than beating anyone else. But I have to be stoic and black out my emotions."

Evert had hoped to play Navratilova here. She had waited six weeks for the chance to avenge her Australian Open defeat. She was disappointed that Martina called in sick.

"I was looking forward to playing Martina," Evert said. "I didn't fear it. I wanted to play her. I'm sorry she's not there but maybe she will play Lipton (Feb. 10-23 at Boca West) now. I know she needs to play another Virginia Slims event but I hope she plays Lipton instead. She's got a conscience. It would be good for women's tennis and South Florida if she did."

Instead of Navratilova, Evert must contend with the young challengers - Steffi Graf and Gabriela Sabatini.

"It's still a tough field," said Evert, who faces Carling Bassett, the ninth seed, tonight in the round of 16.

"I feel threatened by these players. Graf, Sabatini and (Manuela) Maleeva have all taken me to three sets."

If the draw goes according to form, Evert, with a win tonight, will face either Kathy Rinaldi or Stephanie Rehe in the quarterfinals. Sabatini or Maleeva should await in the semifinals, and most likely Graf in Sunday's final. But Graf will be tested today by Miami's Mary Joe Fernandez, who has looked strong in her two matches.

"It's my first tournament of the year, I'm the No. 1 seed and I'm playing in my hometown, so there's going to be pressure on me," Evert said.

"There probably would have been a little more pressure if Martina were here, since I beat her here last year, but I'm not taking anyone lightly."

Evert foot-faulted on the first point and lost the opening game to Huber, an unheralded Austrian. But it wasn't long before she took charge.

"I haven't played in six weeks so I'm not match-tough," Evert said. "It will take three or four matches. Last year I went three sets against Gigi Fernandez and played shaky in my first match. I'm vulnerable in the early rounds.

"The first few games, I was a little rusty, but I played well in the second set. I was happy with my score."

Evert shrugged off several unaccustomed double faults.

"I've been working to improve my serve and it's going to take time," she said. "If anything let me down last year, it was my serve. Especially against Martina in the big matches. I need to be more aggressive.

"I'm trying to get into the court a little bit more and sure enough I foot-faulted on the first point. I'm working on it. I want to get better. It's the little things that keep me going.

"This was my first match and I'm relieved it's over."

Opening Night is a little nerve-wracking even if your name is Chris Evert Lloyd and you're playing the 1,190th match of your career.

Another Opening Night. Another year. Chris Evert Lloyd is 31 and ready to keep swinging. Maybe forever.

"I'm eager," she said. "And ready to get down to it."

9,514 Posts
Thursday, January 30, 1986
Jim Sarni

Mary Joe Fernandez played Steffi Graf in the Orange Bowl in 1981.

Fernandez lost, but she doesn't remember much about the match. She was only 10.

"I was so small," Fernandez said.

Fernandez meets Graf again today in the Virginia Slims of Florida, their first match in the pros. Judging from their ages and talents, Fernandez (14) and Graf (16) will see a lot of each other in the years and decades to come.

"I'm looking forward to playing Graf," said Fernandez, who won her fourth successive Orange Bowl title last month.

"I'm playing well. I want to see how well I can do."

Fernandez, ranked No. 101 on the computer, has knocked off Pam Casale (No.34) and Michelle Torres (No.54) in two matches before the hometown fans.

Fernandez pounded Torres 6-3, 6-3 Wednesday with a persistent and aggressive game.

"The score may have looked easy, but it was hard," Fernandez said. "She runs everything down. I had to change my game; hit lobs and hit hard."

Fernandez was scheduled to meet Chris Evert Lloyd in the original draw, but after Martina Navratilova pulled out with the flu, Evert moved to the top half and Graf, the new No. 2 seed, moved to the bottom half, where Fernandez was placed.

"I wanted to play Chris but I have a better chance against Graf," Fernandez said.

Kathy Jordan, recovering from a knee injury incurred in Australia, reached the third round. Jordan has defeated Anne Hobbs and Catherine Tanvier... Kathleen Horvath knocked off seventh-seeded Catarina Lindqvist 4-6, 6-1 (6-3) in the only upset of the day. Graf (2), Manuela Maleeva (3) and Wendy Turnbull (8) all rallied to win after losing their first sets. Graf defeated Alycia Moulton 3-6, 6-4 (6-1) in her first match in three months... Four of the final 16 - Graf, Fernandez, Gabriela Sabatini and Stephanie Rehe - are under 16.

Evert is scheduled to be featured on The CBS Morning News today (Channels 4, 34 from 7-9 a.m.). The show is being televised from Florida all week.

9,514 Posts
The Miami Herald
Friday, January 31, 1986

Gabriela Sabatini's tennis game took a roller-coaster ride Thursday afternoon.

She was terrible. She was great. Up, down, up, down, for two hours and 28 minutes. In the end, great overcame terrible -- barely.

Sabatini survived her erratic play and the challenge of unseeded Susan Mascarin of Boca Raton to win, 6-7 (7-9), 6-0, 6-4, in the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne on Key Biscayne.

Thursday night, top-seed Chris Evert Lloyd needed only 55 minutes to defeat Carling Bassett, 6-1, 6-0, before 1,500 fans. Evert lost the first game, then won 12 in a row as she kept Bassett off balance, often setting up winners that Bassett was helpless to return.

"I don't think I could play much better than that," Evert said. "I played pretty close to the perfect match."

Sabatini, seeded sixth, staggered in the third set against Mascarin. She trailed, 3-1, before three service breaks kept her in contention for the $40,000 first-place prize money.

"I was confident," said Sabatini, a 15-year-old from Buenos Aires, Argentina, who lives on Key Biscayne. "There was no way I was going to lose."

Mascarin stayed within upset distance with a conservative baseline game. Content with long rallies, Mascarin took advantage of Sabatini's on-and-off game to win numerous points on unforced errors.

But it was Mascarin's errors that helped give Sabatini the victory. Mascarin returned a ball wide to give Sabatini a 5-4 edge in the final set, and returned two balls long in the final game.

"A lot of this game was mental attitude," Mascarin said. "I think both of us played very streaky."

The day did not go by without an upset. Stephanie Rehe defeated fifth-ranked Kathy Rinaldi, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, and will play Evert this afternoon. Unseeded Kathleen Horvath defeated 10th-seeded Andrea Temesvari of Budapest, 0-6, 6-2, 6-2.

Miami's Mary Joe Fernandez was eliminated by second-seeded Steffi Graf of West Germany, 6-0, 6-1.

"I couldn't do much," Fernandez said. "She was hitting winners from everywhere."


Gabriela Sabatini d. Susan Mascarin, 6-7 (7-9), 6-0, 6-4; Kathleen Horvath d. Andrea Temesvari, 0-6, 6-2, 6-2; Bonnie Gadusek d. Jo Durie, 7-5, 6-4; Steffi Graf d. Mary Joe Fernandez, 6-0, 6-1; Stephanie Rehe d. Kathy Rinaldi, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4; Manuela Maleeva d. Kathy Jordan, 6-3, 6-1; Wendy Turnbull d. Anna Maria Cecchini, 6-1, 6-3; Chris Evert Lloyd d. Carling Bassett, 6-1, 6-0.


Lilian Drescher/Christiane Jolissaint d. Jo Durie/Anne Hobbs, 7-6 (7-3), 2-6, 6-2; Catarina Lindqvist/Joanne Russell d. Isabelle Demongeot/Nathalie Tauzia, 1-6, 7-5, 6-1; Bettina Bunge/Eva Pfaff d. Anna Maria Cecchini/Sabrina Goles, 6-2, 6-2; Kathy Jordan/Elizabeth Smiley d. Steffi Graf/Catherine Tanvier, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3; Carling Bassett/Rosalyn Fairbanks d. Penny Barg/ Janine Thompson, 6-4, 6-2.

Today's schedule

Stadium court, 10:30 a.m. -- Bettina Bunge/Eva Pfaff vs. Jill Hetherington/Kathy Rinaldi; Lilian Drescher/Christiane Jolissaint vs. Betsy Nagelsen/Barbara Potter; Wendy Turnbull vs. Steffi Graf; Chris Evert Lloyd vs. Stephanie Rehe.

Stadium court, 6 p.m. -- Manuela Maleeva vs. Gabriela Sabatini; Kathleen Horvath vs. Bonnie Gadusek; Catarina Lindqvist/Joanne Russell vs. Carling Bassett/Rosalyn Fairbanks.

Court 1, 2 p.m. -- Kathy Jordan/Elizabeth Smiley vs. Mercedes Taz/Kim Sands.

9,514 Posts
Friday, January 31, 1986
Jim Sarni

Plantation`s Jay Berger has received a wild card into the Lipton International Players Championships.

Berger, a Clemson sophomore and the U.S. Boys 18 champion, was the sensation of the U.S. Open, reaching the Round of 16 before losing to Yannick Noah.

The LIPC is holding its wild card for the women`s event until Feb. 3, perhaps in hopes that Martina Navratilova will change her mind and enter.

Just in time for Valentine`s Day, tennis has a new romance.

Wimbledon champion Boris Becker and Boca Raton`s Susan Mascarin.

According to the gossip at the Virginia Slims of Florida , the West German star, 18, is due in town to take Mascarin, 21, to the Baryshnikov ballet Saturday night.

Becker`s next tournament is the LIPC at Boca West, where Mascarin lives.

The Virginia Slims of Florida likely will move to mid-February on 1987`s restructured tennis calendar.

The 1987 tour begins with the Australian Open the second and third weeks in January before moving to the United States.

Tournament promoter George Liddy hopes to keep the Virginia Slims of Florida two weeks ahead of the Lipton International Players Championships, which also will be moved up.

The 1987 schedule is being drawn up now in council meetings.

Within the next two weeks, U.S. Davis Cup coach Tom Gorman is expected to select his players for the Americans` opening-round match in Ecuador March 7-9.

John McEnroe, who has taken a 60-day leave of absence, and Jimmy Connors, who is not interested in playing, are out.

A wide-open field remains. Tim Mayotte, Paul Annacone, Scott Davis and Brad Gilbert are the leading Americans, but they have not shown much proficiency on clay. Jimmy Arias and Aaron Krickstein are the best clay courters. Johan Kriek, a U.S. citizen, is a possibility.

Gorman is hoping someone will emerge from the next few tournaments.

The Masters is reverting back to an eight-player round robin in December, and the Virginia Slims Championships may follow the same format for its 1986 November tournament.

Both series-ending events ditched the round robin for 16-player single- elimination tournaments in recent years, but the increased fields diluted the product and increased the chances of an early-round upset. Chris Evert Lloyd and John McEnroe were first-round casualties last year.

The Masters and the Slims Championships should be special. Eight players are enough.

Mikhail Baryshnikov was disappointed that Hana Mandlikova is absent from this week`s Virginia Slims of Florida. The dancer, a big tennis fan, had invited Mandlikova to his party Saturday night. Mandlikova had to pull out of the tournament with a bad shoulder... Martina Navratilova, suffering from the flu, is under the best care in Dallas. Her mother is visiting from Czechoslovakia... Ivan Lendl entered the U.S. Pro Indoors in Philadelphia "to help out" after John McEnroe pulled out to take an extended break from the tour. Jimmy Connors can`t be pleased. Still looking for his first tournament victory in over a year, Connors drops to the No. 2 seed. The USA Network is televising the U.S. Pro Indoors Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m.

Clare Evert has decided not to play college tennis at SMU... John Lloyd and Johan Kriek will try out their new doubles pairing next week in Memphis. They will play together at Lipton and La Quinta and then determine if they have a future together... With drug issues heating up pro football, attention turns to the LIPC, where the men may be tested for drugs next week. The MIPTC said it would test at two of four tournaments this year: LIPC, the French Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open... No sign of any McMahonesque headbands on the women pros in Key Biscayne.

9,514 Posts
Friday, January 31, 1986
Jim Sarni

Just another day at the playground at the Virginia Teens of Florida.

Gabriela Sabatini, 15, turned back Susan Mascarin. Stephanie Rehe, 16, topped Kathy Rinaldi. Manuela Maleeva, 18, trounced Kathy Jordan. And Steffi Graf, 16, spanked Mary Joe Fernandez, 14, in the Teen Special of the Day at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne.

Chris Evert Lloyd doesn't need to retire to have children. She's surrounded by them on the tour.

Thursday Evert dismissed Carling Bassett, 18, 6-1, 6-0. Today she tutors Rehe. Sabatini and Graf get their lessons later in the week.

It's getting to be a little silly having a cigarette company sponsor women's tennis. Break out the Tootsie Pops.

We are the world, we are the children is the true slogan of the game.

Sabatini and Graf, the two youngsters who are destined to rule the game once Evert and Navratilova get tired of winning, followed each other onto the stadium court Thursday.

Sabatini struggled to overcome Mascarin 6-7 (9-7), 6-0, 6-4 in two hours and 28 minutes. Graf routed Fernandez 6-0, 6-1 in only 51 minutes in the disappointing inauguration of a rivalry that should get better with time.

"I hope to play her again sometime. She was too good today," said Fernandez, who had last played Graf in the Orange Bowl 12s five years ago.

"She was hitting winners from everywhere."

Sabatini hit winners when she needed them.

"There was no way I was going to lose," Sabatini said. "Even when I was down 3-0 in the final set, I knew I was going to win."

At that point, Sabatini won the next four games. After Mascarin evened the set, Sabatini closed it out by winning the next two games to the delighted shouts of "Gabby, Gabby" from the South Americans in the crowd.

"It was a pleasant surprise to hear so many Argentines in the crowd," said Sabatini, who trains here with her coach, Patricio Apey.

Mascarin, the underdog from Boca Raton, had her supporters, until the end.

"The crowd was pulling for me at times but in the final set, they were cheering for Sabatini," Mascarin said. "They didn't want her to be out of the tournament.

"We both were pretty streaky. The match would change at any moment. That's good if you're playing bad because you know things will get better. But if you're doing well, that's not so good."

Mascarin, the world junior champion in 1980 when she was 16, understands the high expectations that have been put upon Sabatini at a young age.

"It depends how well she deals with the pressures," Mascarin said. "When I was starting out there weren't many young players. There was only me and Andrea Jaeger and Tracy Austin. Now there are so many young players."

Sabatini opposes Maleeva and Graf meets Wendy Turnbull in today's quarterfinals.

"I'm feeling confident for the rest of the tournament," said Graf, the second seed, who is playing her first tournament in three months.

"I played unbelievably well today. Fernandez has the kind of game I like. Turnbull is not so easy to play. But I am in good shape to play."

Sabatini and Graf were seeded to meet in the quarterfinals in the original draw, but then Navratilova pulled out with the flu. The seeds were switched around in the new draw and Sabatini and Graf ended up in opposite halves.

They have met only once in the pros, last year at Mahwah. They are not likely to meet here with Evert in the way.

Evert beat Bassett for the seventh time in seven tries Thursday night. Four of the victories have come in Florida - one here, one at Amelia Island and two at PGA National.

Since losing a set to Bassett at the 1984 French Open, Evert has won 48 games and lost just nine to the 18-year-old Canadian.

"If I could play like I did tonight all the time, I'd be really happy," Evert said. "I concentrated very well and all my shots were working. I was sharp."

"Chris set it up and hit the big shots," Bassett said. "I missed the big shots."


Key matches

Chris Evert Lloyd (1) d. Carling Bassett (9) 6-1, 6-0.

Steffi Graf (2) d. Mary Joe Fernandez 6-0, 6-1.

Manuela Maleeva (3) d. Kathy Jordan (11) 6-3, 6-1.

Bonnie Gadusek (4) d. Jo Durie (14) 7-5, 6-4.

Stephanie Rehe (12) d. Kathy Rinaldi (5) 6-3, 4-6, 6-4.

Gabriela Sabatini (6) d. Susan Mascarin 6-7 (9-7), 6-0, 6-4.

Wendy Turnbull (8) d. Anna Maria Cecchini 6-1, 6-3.

Kathleen Horvath d. Andrea Temesvari (10) 0-6, 6-2, 6-2.

Today`s quarterfinals

Day session (10:30 a.m.)

Graf vs. Turnbull; Evert vs. Rehe.

Night session (6 p.m.)

Sabatini vs. Maleeva; Horvath vs. Gadusek.

9,514 Posts
The Miami Herald
Saturday, February 1, 1986

She looks like a sourpuss on the tennis court, at times traipsing around with an Ivan Lendl-like scowl.

And South Floridians may remember her for quitting in the middle of the Orange Bowl final against Carling Bassett four years ago.

But the image is misleading. Manuela Maleeva beams an engaging smile when she's away from the court. And she defaulted in the Orange Bowl only because her mother, irked at the officiating, insisted.

Unfortunately for Maleeva, she probably didn't gain many fans Friday night because she ousted hometown favorite Gabriela Sabatini, 6-3, 6-2, in the quarterfinals of the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne on Key Biscayne.

Earlier, Chris Evert Lloyd continued to look sharp in her opening tournament of the year as she overwhelmed 16-year-old Stephanie Rehe, 6-1, 6-0. And Steffi Graf outlasted Wendy Turnbull, 6-1, 6-7 (3-7), 6-2. Late Friday night, Bonnie Gadusek dumped Kathleen Horvath, 7-5, 6-0.

In today's semifinals beginning at 2 p.m., second-seeded Graf will play fourth-seeded Gadusek, and top-seeded Evert will take on third-seeded Maleeva.

So why don't you flash that smile on the court once in a while, Manuela?

"I never thought about it," she said, grinning. "I guess I'm really concentrating very much."

Concentration helped Maleeva outlast erratic Sabatini, a 15-year-old Argentine living on Key Biscayne. For every dazzling topspin winner Sabatini hit, she whacked two duds.

"I knew the people would be for her, and I just wanted to concentrate and be calm," said Maleeva, an 18-year-old from Bulgaria who lost to Sabatini last year in the French Open and at Hilton Head, S.C. "I was nervous because you never know what she's going to do. She didn't hit one ball on the court the first two games. Then she hit some unbelievable shots."

Said Sabatini: "I started playing well to get to 3-all in the first set, but I didn't continue to put the pressure on her. I didn't move my legs."

Tennis meets ballet

You probably won't see Evert doing a pas de deux on the court, but she is going along with several other players tonight to see Mikhail Baryshnikov and the American Ballet Theatre at the Miami Beach Theater of the Performing Arts. Also attending, reportedly as escort to Sue Mascarin, is Wimbledon champion Boris Becker.

Apparently there's growing mutual admiration between tennis and ballet. Baryshnikov envisioned playing an exhibition tennis match with Hana Mandlikova, his favorite player, until she had to withdraw from the tournament because of a shoulder injury.

Friday morning, ballet master Terry Orr and dancer Danilo Radojevic hit for an hour with pros Annabel Croft and Janine Thompson ("They were cordial," Orr said. "They hit to our backhand instead of our forehand.") Then Orr and Radojevic "danced" briefly with Kathy Rinaldi and Barbara Potter, performing a few passes and lifting them on their shoulders.


Steffi Graf d. Wendy Turnbull, 6-1, 6-7 (3-7), 6-2; Chris Evert Lloyd d. Stephanie Rehe, 6-1, 6-0; Manuela Maleeva d. Gabriela Sabatini, 6-3, 6-2; Bonnie Gadusek d. Kathleen Horvath, 7-5, 6-0.


Bettina Bunge-Eva Pfaff d. Jill Hetherington-Kathy Rinaldi, 6-4, 6-4; Betsy Nagelsen-Barbara Potter d. Lilian Drescher- Christiane Jolissaint, 6-3, 6-4; Kathy Jordan-Elizabeth Smylie d. Mercedes Paz-Kim Sands, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3; Carling Bassett-Ros Fairbank d. Catarina Lindqvist-Joanne Russell, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3.

Today's schedule

2 p.m. -- Graf vs. Gadusek; Jordan-Smylie vs. Bunge-Pfaff; Evert vs. Maleeva; Nagelsen-Potter vs. Bassett-Fairbank.

9,514 Posts
Saturday, February 1, 1986
Jim Sarni

Gabriela Sabatini is a beautiful, enchanting gypsy with a tennis racket.

She touches the soul.

Manuela Maleeva is a brooding Bulgarian blacksmith on the court.

No one writes poems about her.

Friday night at the Virginia Slims of Florida, Sabatini met Maleeva. The charmer against the commoner.

Sabatini won the crowd, but Maleeva won the match. Sometimes being popular is not enough.

Maleeva nailed Sabatini 6-3, 6-2 to reach today's semifinals against defending champion Chris Evert Lloyd. Steffi Graf opposes Bonnie Gadusek in the other semifinal.

No. 1 vs. No. 3; No. 2 vs. No. 4. Everything has gone according to form. Or has it?

"A lot of people expected that she would beat me again like she did at the French Open," Maleeva said. "Sabatini is a young player on the rise. But I am not surprised I won. I think the score especially surprised a lot of people."

Maleeva remembered that dark day in Paris. It was Sabatini's coming-out party at Stade Roland Garros, her first breakthrough at a Grand Slam tournament.

Sabatini won 6-3, 1-6, 7-5, and it was a bullfight more than a tennis match. Maleeva was the bull. The crowd roared for the Argentine's every killing thrust.

Maleeva sensed a little deja vu Friday night. This is Sabatini's home, and all her friends came out for a party.

"I knew it would be difficult with all the people cheering for Sabatini," Maleeva said. "But I was very calm. Before when I've played her, I've been pretty nervous.

"I tried to concentrate hard, and I was more confident than I was in Paris. You never know what Sabatini's going to do. She can play very well, and she can start missing. When she does, you have to be consistent. She hit some great shots tonight, but I wasn't missing at all."

Maleeva was the headliner Friday but said she doesn't care about the attention.

"People write a lot about Sabatini, maybe a little bit too much," Maleeva said. "But that's not my job. I've never had much attention on me, and that's fine because I don't want much attention."

Maleeva will be in the center ring today against Evert.

"I hope I can give her some competition," Maleeva said. "Against Chris, you can play very well and still lose 6-0, 6-1. I'm playing well, but I don't know if that will be enough.

Evert will not waste any time. She has tickets to the Baryshnikov ballet tonight in Miami Beach. As the third match, Evert does not know when she will get on.

Evert must wait for Graf and Gadusek, who meet in a rematch of the Lynda Carter/Maybelline Classic semifinal of September at Bonaventure. Graf defeated Gadusek 6-3, 7-6, but it was a struggle.

"It will be really tough again," said Graf, who eliminated Wendy Turnbull 6-1, 6-7 (7-3), 6-2 Friday. "Bonnie did not play perfect tennis that day."

Graf, like Sabatini, creates great expectations. The West German is the No. 2 seed and is expected to win.

"I don't expect anything," Graf said. "I will be happy if I get to the final."


Friday's quarterfinals

Chris Evert Lloyd (1) d. Stephanie Rehe (12) 6-1, 6-0.

Steffi Graf (2) d. Wendy Turnbull (8) 6-1, 6-7 (7-3), 6-2.

Manuela Maleeva (3) d. Gabriela Sabatini (6) 6-3, 6-2.

Bonnie Gadusek (4) d. vs. Kathleen Horvath 7-5, 6-0.

Today's semifinals

(Starting at 2 p.m.)

Graf vs. Gadusek.

Evert vs. Maleeva.

Tickets: 1,000 remain for today, 500 for Sunday.

9,514 Posts
The Miami Herald
Sunday, February 2, 1986

Remember moonballs?

Teen-age whizzes like Andrea Jaeger practically lobbed their way toward Top 10 status on the women's tennis tour a few years ago. They would powderpuff nearly every shot back like human backboards.

But there are no moonballs over Miami. That will be evident today at 2 p.m. when 16-year-old Steffi Graf, a leader of the new generation, challenges Chris Evert Lloyd in the final of the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne on Key Biscayne.

"Steffi hits the ball very hard," Evert said Saturday after she had demolished third-seeded Manuela Maleeva, 6-1, 6-0, and second-seeded Graf dumped No. 4 Bonnie Gadusek with surprising ease, 6-0, 6-2, before an estimated 3,500.

"She's a good young player who will play loose," added Evert, who is 4-0 against Graf. "I've never really beaten her easily. If I play as I have been doing this week, I should win. If I don't, I'll be threatened by her."

Evert, 31, has stayed a step ahead of the brash bashers by strengthening her game. Under the tutelage of friend Kathy Smith, the "fitness guru," she has hit the weight room the past two years, including three to four times a week during a break from the tour the last six weeks.

No, Evert doesn't resemble Hulk Hogan, or even Martina Navratilova. But she looks stronger than ever, as Maleeva discovered when she couldn't win one point off Evert's first four service games. Evert has lost only six games in four matches and has zipped through the last three by identical 6-1, 6-0 margins.

"I feel stronger," said Evert. "I try to build my upper body. It helps prevent injuries. You need to take care of yourself, but I don't mean to sound like a Geritol commercial.

"Because the younger players hit harder, I feel pressure to hit hard. When you classify someone as a baseliner, she's not a player who just pushes the ball back. They're hitting hard, and I don't want to be on the defensive.

"The level of tennis is so much better. I want to take the initiative by hitting a winner. I don't want them to move me around like a puppet."

Instead, Evert is still yanking players nearly half her age around the court. The only game 18-year-old Maleeva managed to win was the first one, but it took five deuces and nine minutes to hold serve.

"She barely missed the ball," groaned Maleeva. "When you play someone who hits the ball that hard and that well it becomes frustrating. You can't do anything. My biggest mistake was staying at the baseline."

Evert finished the match in plenty of time to make the curtain call for the Mikhail Baryshnikov ballet performance on Miami Beach. But she said that's not why she won so quickly.

"I just didn't want to make it a long match. She has beaten me before (once in 10 meetings), and after someone beats me I have more respect for them. She's so steady, I didn't want to stay out there three hours."

Evert was on top of her game a year ago in this tournament, capping the week with a 6-2, 6-4 triumph over Navratilova in the final.

"The last three matches I've felt even sharper than I did last year," said Evert. "I'm coming in more (to the net) and it seems more natural. And I don't think my groundstrokes can get any better."

But she can't gauge her improvement against Navratilova. Martina remains in bed at home in Fort Worth, Texas, with the flu.

"Sure, I'd like to play Martina," said Evert. "But against her there are more factors. Nerves. Both of us are more nervous against each other. And she doesn't let me get into a rhythm. She comes in on every ball.

"But I'm not going to predict what would have happened if we had played."

Graf proved too unpredictable for Gadusek, who said, "You never know where she's going to hit. She can go either way and keeps you hesitating, and you react too late."

Said Graf: "I was hitting my forehand pretty good and she had a problem with my slice backhand. She wasn't playing too well for that (cement) surface."

In the doubles semifinals, top-seeded Kathy Jordan and Elizabeth Smylie beat No. 3 Bettina Bunge and Eva Pfaff, 6-3, 6-2; and second-seeded Betsy Nagelsen and Barbara Potter edged No. 4 Carling Bassett and Ros Fairbank, 6-4, 6-4. The doubles final will follow the singles final.


The $7,500 WTA/USTA Players Challenge, a women's tournament organized the past few days, will be Monday through Saturday at the Olympus Club in Lantana.

The event was organized to give players a chance to gain match play and extra practice leading into the Lipton International Players Championships Feb. 10-23 at Boca West. The 32-player draw is considerably stronger than most satellite events and includes Eva Pfaff, Christiane Jolissaint and Fairbank, all ranked among the top 35.

9,514 Posts
Sunday, February 2, 1986
Jim Sarni

The Women`s Tennis Association has hastily scheduled a tournament this week in Lantana to give its players a warmup for next week`s Lipton International Players Championships.

The WTA/USTA Players Challenge runs Monday through Sunday at the Olympus Club.

The 32-player draw offers $7,500 in prize money, a paltry sum in today`s marketplace, but it has drawn a strong field eager for some competition.

Eva Pfaff, ranked No. 32, is the top seed, followed by Christiane Jolissaint.

Alycia Moulton, Ros Fairbank, Molly Von Nostrand, Catherine Tanvier, Anne Hobbs, Elizabeth Smylie and Carina Karlsson are also entered. Any player ranked in the top 106 did not have to qualify.

The Players Challenge replaces the BMW Championships, scheduled for Marco Island, which was canceled several months ago.

Marco Island will reportedly get a new tournament, the Tournament of Champions (March 31-April 6), which is moving from Orlando, where it has been played the past six years.

Chris Evert Lloyd hopes to catch Martina Navratilova and win the Virginia Slims points standings, but she won`t claim any crown if she does.

"If you ask anyone on the street, they`ll say that Martina was No. 1 for 1985," Evert said. "If I win the points race, there would be a real problem, a big conflict."

The winner of the Slims race, which ends with the championships in New York in March, is the automatic No. 1 player, endorsed by the International Tennis Federation, for the 1985-86 Slims season.

"I`ve always disagreed with the concept that the No. 1 player would be decided by points alone," Evert said.

Evert trails Navratilova 3,000-2,550. Evert can earn 250 points by winning the Virginia Slims of Florida.

With Navratilova on the sick list, Evert could move into first place by winning the Virginia Slims of Florida and Lipton.

Kathy McRinaldi wore a "ROZELLE" headband during a doubles match Thursday night. . . Wendy Turnbull won the Amstel Light Award, given to a player who shows the highest commitment to sportsmanship and all-around excellence on and off the court. . . The WTA is still waiting to hear from Navratilova on whether she will enter the LIPC.

The doubles teams of Kathy Jordan and Elizabeth Smylie, and Bettina Bunge and Eva Pfaff played to a captive audience Saturday in a semifinal.

Their match was sandwiched between the two singles in a change from the routine scheduling format.

"We`ve always wanted to alternate the singles and doubles, but we couldn`t because the singles players were always in the doubles," tournament director Carrie Fleming Cromartie said.

"The doubles teams deserve some attention. Many of the fans leave after the singles."

Jordan and Smylie won the match 6-3, 6-2 and will play Betsy Nagelsen and Barbara Potter in today`s final. Nagelsen and Potter defeated Carling Bassett and Ros Fairbank 6-4, 6-4.

Less than 500 tickets remained for today`s finals. For more information, call 565-7115.

9,514 Posts
I have often wondered whether everyone really believed the "Graf needs a few more YEARS" theory or if it was a case of everyone downplaying it for various reasons.

Sunday, February 2, 1986
Jim Sarni

Chris Evert Lloyd did not send Martina Navratilova a get-well card this week.

But Navratilova is probably getting the message by checking the scores every day from the Virginia Slims of Florida :

Evert d. Bassett 6-1, 6-0.

Evert d. Rehe 6-1, 6-0.

Evert d. Maleeva 6-1, 6-0.

Hurry back, Martina, and give me a match.

While Navratilova rests in a sick bed in Dallas, Evert has been making chicken soup out of the local tournament.

Evert has lost six games in four matches heading into today`s 2 p.m. final against West German teen-ager Steffi Graf at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne.

Saturday, Evert lost a long opening game, then won 12 in a row against Manuela Maleeva. Graf eliminated Bonnie Gadusek 6-0, 6-2.

"I don`t know how I would do against Martina if I were to play her Sunday," Evert said. "Just because I`ve played well against the Carlings and Manuelas, it doesn`t mean I`d play that well against Martina.

"But I feel very sharp, even sharper than I did last year."

Maleeva was impressed.

"Chris has never played better against me," said the 18-year-old Bulgarian, who defeated Evert at the 1984 Italian Open, her one victory in 11 tries.

"She hardly missed a ball. It was so hard to play her. I didn`t know what to do. When she`s playing this well, there`s nothing you can do."

Evert did not lose a point on her serve until the fifth game, when a net- chord backhand thwarted her. The match was over in one hour and 4 minutes.

Evert wanted a fast match. For one thing, she had tickets to the Baryshnikov ballet Saturday night. But she didn`t expect to waltz by Maleeva.

"She has beaten me before and after someone beats me, I have more respect for them," Evert said. "I knew what I was up against today. Maleeva is so steady. You have to go for your shots. I didn`t want to stay out there for three hours because she would outlast me. I wanted to get it over with."

Evert pounced on every short ball.

"I`m coming in more now and it seems natural," Evert said. "Last year, it was a foreign feeling. But I`m not even thinking about it now. If there`s a mid-court ball, I come in."

Graf knows she has a mountain to climb today.

"Chris is playing her best tennis at the moment," said Graf, the second seed, who has won two matches easily (Gadusek and Mary Joe Fernandez) and two matches in three sets (Alycia Moulton and Wendy Turnbull).

"It`s great to be in the final, but it`s going to be tough against Chris," she said.

Graf said she thought it was going to be tough against Gadusek.

"At the beginning, I wasn`t sure about hitting the balls," Graf said. "But they all went inside the lines."

Gadusek seemed to be a step away from every shot.

"Graf keeps you hesitating because you don`t know what she`s going to do," Gadusek said. "I was late reacting. She makes you feel slow and you look slow."

Evert is playing in her 201th final (she has won 142). Graf is playing in her fifth as she attempts to win her first tournament.

Graf, 16, was in diapers when Evert won her first tournament.

"Steffi has no chance against Chris," said Peter Graf, father and coach who also happens to be a realist.

"Chris is too good. I just hope that Steffi wins a few games. Steffi needs time. Give her a few more years."

Evert has beaten Graf in four previous matches without dropping a set. The rivalry began at the Lipton International Players Championships last year.

"Graf is a good, young player," Evert said. "It`s hard to tell how she`s going to play. She can be up and down. When she`s on, she can be very sharp. Mentally, she`s pretty tough. I`ve played her four times, but I`ve never beaten her easily."

This was supposed to have been the Battle of Key Biscayne, Part II between Evert and Navratilova. The way Evert is playing, it would have been a great sequel.

Now it is the Evert Show, a one-woman tour de force. All Navratilova can do is read the sports pages.

Get well soon.

9,514 Posts
Sunday, February 2, 1986
Melissa Isaacson

Time was of the essence for Chris Evert Lloyd on Saturday. She had a date with Mikail Baryshnikov that evening and had every intention of keeping it.

But first, she had to defeat Manuela Maleeva in the semifinals of the Virginia Slims of Florida Tournament.

No problem: 6-1, 6-0 in 1 hour, 4 minutes. Lloyd will play for the championship today against Steffi Graf, who was an easy, 6-0, 6-2 winner over Largo's Bonnie Gadusek in the other semifinal.

Lloyd was to attend the ballet with her mother Saturday night after her match. Earlier, she kidded that she hoped she could make it in time because she didn't want to miss Baryshnikov.

Following the match, however, she was a little more serious.

''I just wanted to get it over with,'' Lloyd said. ''Manuela is so steady, I don't want to stay out there with her for three hours because she'll probably outlast me.''

Maleeva defeated Lloyd once in 10 matches, in the final of the 1984 Italian Open. But it sure wasn't to be this day, as the defending champ battered the 18-year-old Bulgarian with the patented Lloyd game -- crisp, incredibly accurate groundstrokes.

''I don't think my groundstrokes can get much better,'' Lloyd said. ''I feel very sharp right now.''

She even threw in a few volleys.

''It feels a lot more natural for me to approach and volley,'' Lloyd said. ''I don't even think about it. If there's a midcourt ball, I'm going to come in and volley.''

Maleeva was reverent in defeat.

''I don't think she's ever played better against me,'' she said. ''When you play someone who hits the ball so hard and doesn't miss, you just don't know what to do. You try so hard and you can't do anything.''

Maleeva paused a long time when asked how Graf could defeat Lloyd. ''If Chris plays against Steffi like she did today, I don't think there's much Steffi can do.''

Apparently, Graf, 16, doesn't think so, either. When asked how she felt about her play, she said, ''I'm really glad I made it to the finals. It's been a good week.'' Then she blushed and added, ''Well, I'm not finished yet.''

Gadusek was finished quickly, losing the shortest match of the week in 49 minutes.

The first game of the second set -- a combination of Graf's finesse and Gadusek's mistakes -- was typical of Gadusek's frustration.

Charging the net and putting away a volley, Gadusek had the home-state crowd behind her as she took a 40-15 lead. But Graf rifled a forehand passing shot down the right side to win the next point. Gadusek volleyed into the net to put the game at deuce, and then Gadusek twice missed long.

Gadusek said Graf did a good job of keeping her off balance. ''The problem is, you never know where she's going to hit it,'' Gadusek said. ''She can do anything with the ball. She kept a lot of pressure on me.''

Some of the luster was taken off the tournament when top-seeded Martina Navratilova dropped out last Sunday because of the flu.

Lloyd said it wouldn't be quite the same. ''Playing Martina, a lot more comes into play, one of which is nerves. Also, Martina doesn't let me get into my rhythm. It's not like that with the other girls.''

9,514 Posts
The Miami Herald
Monday, February 3, 1986

After hitting the lines on a barrage of shots against Steffi Graf -- and receiving a couple of favorable line calls -- Chris Evert Lloyd tossed around one-liners.

Evert was handed an envelope supposedly containing the $40,000 winner's check for her 6-3, 6-1 victory in the final of the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida tennis tournament Sunday at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne on Key Biscayne. But when she opened it, she found nothing.

"The check's in the mail," Evert said. "Or it better be."

When it arrives, it will boost her career earnings to $6.4 million. Graf, a 16-year-old West German, earned $20,000 for a career total of $253,409.

Addressing the near-capacity crowd of 4,912, Evert thanked the sponsors, promoters, fans, ball boys and ball girls, and even "the linesman who helped me a little today." Evert continued the levity in her press conference, donning a headband that said "Stierheim" in honor of the new executive director of the Women's Tennis Association, former Dade County Manager Merrett Stierheim.

But unlike NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who fined Chicago Bears' quarterback Jim McMahon $5,000 for wearing an improper headband, Stierheim didn't penalize Evert. He just laughed it off.

On the court, though, Evert was all business. She lost only one game after breaking away from a 3-3 deadlock in the first set. In posting her 143rd pro tournament championship, she successfully defended the title she won last year against Martina Navratilova, who withdrew from this event because of the flu.

"This match was tougher than the previous ones this week," said Evert, who lost only six games in her first four matches. "Steffi hits the ball harder, especially on the forehand. And that backhand is tricky to return; she slices it and it sits there low and is a great change of pace.

"When the going got tough at 3-all, I started grooving and hitting freely. After I won the first set, I think she knew she had to work harder. She sprayed her shots more. I don't know if she could have kept up the caliber of play from the first set."

Graf, ranked sixth in the world, broke Evert's service in the first game of the second set. But Evert broke right back, winning the last point on a forehand that Graf and many spectators thought was beyond the baseline.

Graf argued with the linesman, Chet Orrill, and "said something I don't want to repeat" to the umpire. The call seemed to disrupt her game, and she won only four more points the rest of the way, losing 11 in a row at one stretch.

"It was the most important call of the match," Graf said. "I'm very sure it was clearly out. It wasn't possible to not let it affect me."

Said Evert: "The calls even out, believe me, over a tournament."

The match was a fitting climax to "a great week" for Evert, who was playing her first tournament since dropping the Australian Open final to Navratilova in early December. Her next event will be the two-week Lipton International Players Championships beginning next Monday at Boca West.

"I couldn't have asked for anything more for the first week," she said. "I didn't know if I'd struggle or be in good enough shape. But at match point, I felt I could have played another set.

"But it's a long year ahead. I'm optimistic, but I have to work hard. I need a week off now."

In the doubles final, Kathy Jordan and Elizabeth Smylie defeated Betsy Nagelsen and Barbara Potter, 7-6 (7-5), 2-6, 6-2.


Don Lufton of the Continental Company, owner of the Sheraton Royal Biscayne, said the company had picked up its option on the tournament for 1987 . . . The Amstel Light Beer Award, for sportsmanship and excellence on and off the court, was presented to veteran Wendy Turnbull . . . The $7,500 Players Challenge will begin at 9:30 a.m. today at the Olympus Club in Lantana. Among eight players advancing through the qualifying round Sunday was Amy Schwartz of North Miami Beach, a 6-2, 6-2 winner over Gabriela Dinu.

9,514 Posts
The Miami Herald
Monday, February 3, 1986

No time warp for Chris Evert Lloyd. Chrissie warps time.

How else can anyone explain the ever-lovelier "elder stateswoman" of tennis so bending the years and numbers to her will in allowing Steffi Graf only one of the last 14 points in a 6-3, 6-1 rollaway in Key Biscayne's $250,000 Virginia Slims of Florida tournament?

It seems, well, only the day before yesterday that Chrissie was a 14-year-old playing at Lighthouse Point for first prize of a radio.

Not only that, but because the radio station sponsoring the event was strictly AM, the radio didn't even play FM.

And here, 143 pro titles and 17 years later, tennis' premier female of the last 15 years is facing a 16-year-old who is at least clinically young enough to be Chrissie's daughter.

At no point is Sunday's match close. But it switches from mere domination to stark wipeout when a linesman calls an Evert forehand in when it is obviously out. That point gives Evert a service break in the second game of the second set, and Graf wins only four points in the five games thereafter.

"I lost my concentration," says Graf. To which Evert responds: "If you feel you got a bad call, you've got to block it out and just go on. If Steffi didn't block it out today, that's her problem."

Cold-blooded? Just tennis. It never was a problem for Evert. If Graf is going to come even close to representing in the next decade and a half what Evert has for that last stretch, she will have to rein herself in.

It is, of course, asking too much of anyone to show the icy control of an Evert. Even Martina Navratilova, absent from Key Biscayne because of illness, never has had this kind of grip on herself, although Evert had an answer ready late Sunday when a questioner blurted, "You can't wait to get at Martina this year, can you?"

"That's what you think!" Evert snapped back, laughing.

She was half-kidding. That's just what a lot of us think -- that this Chris might just go right back at Martina's jugular.

Never in any of her 17 Grand Slam championships has Evert played better than she is playing now. And Sunday, she was facing an opponent who is as good as any of the other 18-and- under lionesses -- Manuela Maleeva, Kathy Rinaldi, Gabriela Sabatini, Carling Bassett, Mary Joe Fernandez, any of them.

Evert had no sooner saluted tournament promoter George Liddy as "the greatest I ever met" than he was exulting over how she keeps taking on new waves of brilliance.

"First there was her own age generation, and she handled them all," Liddy said. "Then came the Tracy Austin-Andrea Jaeger contingent. Everybody said they were going to get Chris, but they didn't. Then everybody thought this new bunch would, and it isn't getting her, either. Not yet it isn't."

Physically, it is almost as if Evert is looking at mirror images across the net. The mental plane always has set her apart. But now something just as intriguing physiologically has sprung up.

Graf is a gang of player herself. She turns her slice backhand from merely a defensive instrument into an offensive weapon by mixing it with a topspin forehand so the opponent never can get set for a consistent bounce. Graf hits both sides hard, a ringing departure from the patball that sometimes threatens to engulf women's tennis.

Now, even more refreshingly, we find in Evert a fresh sinew entwined with the same dauntless concentration. Given the combination, any 16-year-old playing 31-year-old Chris must feel like a child playing cops and robbers with a trained assassin.

I couldn't understand for a long time how anyone who has performed so lethally in general since she was 6 could still have a serve as mediocre as Evert's.

We needn't wonder any more. She is piling into the ball a little farther out front. Pumping iron is helping her pump serves.

"I don't want my serve just to start out a point," she said, adding dryly, "the way it has for the last 31 years." Actually, only the last 25.

The difference is noticeable in any case. If Graf never had a reasonable chance Sunday, she had no chance whatsoever against Evert's muscled-up serve.

Next year it may be different -- if Graf can keep her head while linesmen are losing their eyes.

And by the way, how long have we been saying that about these lionesses that Evert keeps kicking around?

9,514 Posts
Monday, February 3, 1986
Jim Sarni

Chris Evert Lloyd has the victory speech down pat.

After 143 tournament victories, the Fort Lauderdale champion should know the lines.

Thank the sponsor. Thank the promoter. Thank the linesmen, the ballboys and ballgirls. Compliment her opponent on reaching the final. Thank the fans for coming out all week.

Sorry about the match.

Steffi Graf was no match for Evert in the final of the Virginia Slims of Florida Sunday. The West German teen-ager fell 6-3, 6-1.

The capacity crowd of 5,000 didn`t seem to mind the lack of competition. Tennis fans have come to appreciate Evert the artist as much as Evert the athlete.

Some of Sunday`s spectators have been watching Evert since she won her first Florida tournament in 1971. The Virginia Slims of Florida was Evert`s 31st state title, and she may never have played better.

Evert lost 10 games in 12 sets.

"Chris was definitely ready for this tournament," promoter George Liddy said. "She looked like Hagler before the Hearns fight."

"It was a great week. For the first tournament of the year, I couldn`t have asked for anything more," said Evert, defending her title for the fourth year,going back to when it was the Murjani Cup at PGA National.

"It`s a long year. I`d love to play like this every tournament. I won this tournament last year (defeating Martina Navratilova) and went on to have a great year. I hope I can do the same this year. I`m optimistic. I know I have to work hard."

The closest Graf got Sunday was 3-all in the first set. Evert lead 2-0 and 3-1 before losing two successive games. But Evert ran off 12 of the next 14 points to dash Graf`s chances.

Graf did break Evert in the opening game of the second set. The second game went to deuce when, on Evert`s ad, Graf got a bad baseline call.

Graf lost the game and her spirit. Dismayed and discouraged, Graf won only four points the rest of the way.

"After the bad call, I didn`t play too good anymore," said Graf, who was the runner-up to Navratilova last October at the Lynda Carter/Maybelline Classic, her last South Florida tournament.

"I thought, `Right now, a bad call.` The match could have been a lot tighter. I lost my concentration. This is something I have to work on."

"When you get a bad call, you have to block it out of your mind and go on to the next point," Evert said. "I think she was a little disappointed after losing the first set. She knew she would have to work hard to win the second set. I don`t think she could have kept up her caliber of play. She played really well in the beginning."

Evert was ready to play all day.

"After the match point, I could have played another set or two," Evert said. "I felt great."

Evert, $40,000 richer, will take a week off and get ready for the Lipton International Players Championships, which begin Feb. 10 at Boca West.

"I would really like to win Lipton," said Evert, who lost last year`s inaugural to Navratilova.

Navratilova, however, along with No. 3-ranked Hana Mandlikova and No. 4 Claudia Kohde-Kilsch, is missing from the LIPC cast.

"Lipton is the players` tournament and all the players have a share in it," Evert said. "It`s too bad that every top player isn`t playing, but the top players are pulled in so many directions. It`s just not possible to please everybody. Something has to give."

Evert will be favored to add another title to her cache. She may have to work to win her matches, but the victory speech should be a snap.

Kathy Jordan and Elizabeth Smylie beat Betsy Nagelsen and Barbara Potter 7-6 (7-5), 2-6, 6-2 to win the doubles title. . . The Sheraton Royal Biscayne announced the Virginia Slims of Florida would return here next year. . . After Sunday`s match, Evert posed for photographers wearing a headband labeled "Stierheim" for WTA Commissioner Merritt Stierheim.

9,514 Posts
Monday, February 3, 1986
Melissa Isaacson

Chris Evert Lloyd performed her Jim McMahon impression Sunday afternoon after easily defeating Steffi Graf for the Virginia Slims of Florida championship.

Clowning around after a 6-3, 6-1 victory worth $40,000 at the Sheraton Royal Biscayne, Lloyd mugged for the cameras by donning a headband with the word STIERHEIM on it.

Merrett Stierheim, formerly Dade County manager, recently took over as commissioner of the Women's Tennis Association.

Asked if she would be fined $5,000, Lloyd giggled, put her arm around Stierheim and said, ''I was paid to do this.''

Lloyd, 31, was in a cheery mood after sailing through her first tournament of 1986 and her 143rd career victory.

She defeated six opponents in straight sets and defeated Graf, 16, in 1 hour, 15 minutes.

''This match was tougher for me than my previous matches,'' Lloyd said. ''Steffi hits the ball harder than the other girls and can hurt me more.''

Graf of West Germany, who earned $20,000 for finishing second, had a little tougher road to the final but had it easy in the semis, beating Bonnie Gadusek, 7-5, 6-0.

Sunday, however, was a frustrating day for Graf, who played a competitive first set. After taking a 1-0 lead in the second set, she lost concentration after an apparent wide shot by Lloyd was not called out.

Accepting her winner's check, Lloyd made reference to the call. ''I want to thank the umpires,'' Lloyd said. ''They helped me out today.''

After the crowd of 4,910 cheered loudly in agreement, Lloyd amended her comments. ''Believe me, it equals out all week,'' she said. ''You get some good ones, and you get some bad ones.''

Graf said the call ''definitely'' affected her concentration. ''I didn't play too good after that,'' she said. ''I felt much tireder.

''That was the most important call of the match. I thought it was out, and I think a lot of other people did too. . . . At the end, I didn't know what to do anymore. I missed some easy balls.''

Graf approached the head umpire, but said later, ''I said something I don't want to say right now.''

Lloyd said she sensed Graf lost her concentration after that, but that it did not have to mean the end of the match.

''You have to block it out of your mind and go on to the next point,'' Lloyd said. ''If she didn't do that, that was her problem.''

Lloyd, who played her typically strong baseline game in front of a familiar crowd (she's from Fort Lauderdale), said she feels stronger than she has ever felt.

''I don't think I'm hitting harder, I just think, because of my weight work, I'm stronger physically,'' she said.

She also said she has adjusted her serve. ''I don't want to serve just to start out the point, like I've done the last 31 years,'' she said. ''At this point of my career, I want to use it more as a weapon and get some cheap points, like I did today.''

Lloyd said she played more aggressively than usual this past week and will have to begin to pace herself more.

''I have a long year ahead of me,'' Lloyd said. ''I don't know if I can play like this in every tournament.... I need a week off after this.''

Graf, who said Lloyd is playing her best tennis right now, also said some of the other players may be finally closing in on No. 2 Lloyd and No. 1 Martina Navratilova, who pulled out of the tournament earlier in the week because of the flu.

''I think everyone's getting closer now,'' Graf said. ''Hana Mandlikova has won a couple of times against Martina. For me, I really need a couple more years. I have to improve my serve and my backhand. I have to improve a lot.''
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