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U.S. OPEN NOTES : Add Lendl, Bruguera to Early Casualty List

September 02, 1993|BILL DWYRE | TIMES SPORTS EDITOR

NEW YORK — Sergei Bruguera and Ivan Lendl, searching for a doctor in the house and finding none here Wednesday, each bowed out of the U.S. Open in the first round.

Bruguera, the Spaniard who beat Jim Courier in this year's French Open final and who came in here ranked fifth in the world, lost to fellow Barcelona resident Javier Sanchez, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3, 6-4. Afterward, he said his obvious sluggish play was caused by diarrhea.

"I was very tired, right from the start," he said.

Lendl's medical situation was potentially more serious. The three-time champion and five-time runner-up here was trailing Neil Borwick on the Stadium Court, 4-6, 6-4, 3-1, when he retired because of a knee injury.

"I came in with a bad knee, and it just kept getting worse," Lendl said. "I had no strength to push off, and so I saw no sense in playing."

Lendl said the injury is either a sprained tendon or slight ligament tear, and he said he had injured it in practice a couple of days ago and had it treated then with medication.

The departure of Lendl, seeded 13th, and Bruguera, seeded fifth, established a record in men's singles for the Open. It meant that five seeded players have been eliminated in the first round. The old record of three was established in 1986 and matched again in 1991.

That record could be extended to six today, if No. 4 Boris Becker loses to Andrei Cherkasov. The match was scheduled for the Stadium Court on Wednesday night but was halted by by rain at 15-all of the first game.

*

Andrei Medvedev, the 19-year-old star from the Ukraine, who is fast becoming the heir to Goran Ivanisevic as the stand-up comic of the tour, had a good day here Wednesday. Among other things, the eighth-seeded Medvedev beat Fernando Meligeni of Brazil, 6-2, 6-2, 4-6, 6-1; trashed New York City and then sportswriters.

Some samples of the latter two events:

--"Here, you don't get fresh air. So you cannot really run; all your functions are a little bit destroyed."

--"Too many people here. Too noisy."

--"In New York, people don't look at the face. I noticed it. It is very funny. They look at the eyes, just in the eyes and they don't care who you are. . . . They just look in the eyes, maybe the girls look at your body, but not the men."

On to sportswriters:

--"No, I don't like to talk to you. Don't get me wrong. The more I talk, the more . . . you put in the paper. I am just helping you do your job and I think I will talk to the ATP that we should get paid for it."

--"You make huge money and we get nothing more than destruction so we should get a percentage of it. I can give you lots of . . . that you can write. But for this, you know we have to get paid. I won't talk for free."

Then Medvedev talked for five more minutes.

*

Reports circulated Wednesday that Thomas Enqvist, the Swede who ousted Andre Agassi Tuesday night, had collapsed. Turned out he felt dizzy after practice, was hydrated by a doctor and was last seen eating a pasta dinner. . . . The women's side of the tournament went more smoothly than the men's, with top players Steffi Graf, Gabriela Sabatini and Conchita Martinez running through opponents in straight sets. . . . Ivanisevic set an Open record with his 20-18, third-set tiebreaker in his victory over Daniel Nestor. The 38-point tiebreaker equaled the record for a Grand Slam event.

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