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TENNIS ROUNDUP : American Trio Advances, but Lendl Loses in Italian

May 14, 1992|From Associated Press

Americans Jim Courier, Pete Sampras and Michael Chang moved into the final 16 of the Italian Open Wednesday, trying to break a nine-year U.S. drought in the clay-court tournament at Rome.

The last U.S. winner at the Italian was Jimmy Arias in 1983.

Courier, No. 1 in the world, breezed past Francisco Clavet of Spain, 6-2, 6-2. Sampras, seeded No. 2, defeated Austria's Horst Skoff, 6-3, 6-4, and Chang, seeded No. 5, defeated Italy's Renzo Furlan, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3.

Ivan Lendl, seeded No. 9, was eliminated by Marc Rosset of Switzerland, 6-4, 2-6, 7-6 (7-3).

Lendl, former No. 1-ranked player now struggling to get past the early rounds, claimed he lost his confidence after the chair umpire, Richard Ings of Australia, reversed a call during the tiebreaker. Lendl, who was leading at the time, 3-1, dropped the next six points to lose the match.

"I felt I didn't get a fair shake from the umpire today," Lendl said. "After the match, I asked him, "How can you live with yourself?"

Boris Becker, who withdrew before the start of the Italian Open, said he is not sure he will be in shape for the French Open, which begins May 25. Becker has a thigh injury.

Jennifer Capriati struggled to a 6-3, 2-6, 6-1 victory over unheralded Silke Meier of Germany in the second round of the German Open. Mary Joe Fernandez, seeded No. 4, had an easier time, beating Bulgarian Lubomira Bacheva, 6-2, 6-1.

In an upset, Sandra Cecchini of Italy beat Anke Huber of Germany, 1-6, 6-2, 6-0. Huber was seeded No. 5.

Steffi Graf, seeded No. 1, had the day off and will play Helena Sukova of Czechoslovakia Thursday.

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