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Italian Open Victory Has Corretja Thinking Bigger

May 19, 1997|From Staff and Wire Reports

Alex Corretja won a showdown of the world's hottest clay-court players Sunday and established himself as a favorite for the French Open.

The 10th-seeded Spaniard outplayed No. 7 Marcelo Rios of Chile, 7-5, 7-5, 6-3, to win the Italian Open at Rome for the biggest title of his career.

Playing in his fourth clay-court final of the year, Corretja avenged his loss to Rios in the championship match at the Monte Carlo Open.

"It's unbelievable to win here," Corretja said. "The next step will be to win a Grand Slam [event]."


Mary Joe Fernandez won her first championship in more than two years, 6-4, 6-2, when Mary Pierce's power game vanished in the final of the German Open at Berlin.

Motor Sports

Elliott Sadler, last in the race a year ago, got the first NASCAR Busch series victory of his career in the CoreStates Advantage 200 at Nazareth (Pa.) Speedway.

After starting from the pole, Sadler led 107 of 200 laps and held off a hard-charging Todd Bodine to win by only 0.209 seconds in a Chevrolet, averaging 92.700 mph.

The wife of NASCAR team owner Leonard Wood was killed and he was among those injured in a crash on Interstate 85 shortly after the completion of a race at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway. Betty Webb Wood, 64, of Stuart, Va., was killed about 10:50 p.m. Saturday night when a southbound car jumped the median and hit the northbound van in which she was traveling.

High school senior Cristen Powell of Portland, Ore., defeated Bruce Sarver for her first Top Fuel victory at the NHRA Mopar Parts Nationals at Englishtown, N.J.


After five league titles in six years and an eight-month ban for kicking a fan, volatile French soccer star Eric Cantona retired.

Ben Iroha's goal in the fifth round of a shootout gave the Washington DC United a 1-0 victory over the New England Revolution before 12,624 at Foxboro, Mass. . . . Antony De Avila ended New York-New Jersey's 361-minute scoreless streak, and the MetroStars snapped a two-game losing string with a 1-0 victory over the Kansas City Wizards at East Rutherford, N.J., in front of 15,109. . . . Jamaica, on a goal by Andrew Williams in the 23rd minute, defeated El Salvador, 1-0, at Kingston.


World record-holder Donovan Bailey made a return to Canadian track, winning the 100 meters in 9.99 seconds at the Harry Jerome Classic at Vancouver.

The first sport-caught albacore of the year was landed Sunday aboard the Producer out of H&M Landing in San Diego. The day's total haul was 18 albacore in the 14- to 18-pound class by anglers aboard the Producer and the Pacific Queen out of Fisherman's Landing, about 40 miles southwest of Point Loma.

The College of New Jersey women's lacrosse team's 102-game winning streak came to an end as Middlebury College defeated the Lions, 14-9, in the NCAA Division III championship game at Bethlehem, Pa. . . . Kenyan Joseph Kimani took the lead early and won the 12K Bay-to-Breakers at San Francisco in 33:51. Kenyan Jane Omoro won the women's race in 39:55. . . . Kent Steffes and Jose Loiola won their fifth beach volleyball tournament of the season when Randy Stoklos and Troy Tanner withdrew because Tanner was cramping in the South Texas Open in Corpus Christi. . . . Top-seeded Lisa Arce and Holly McPeak beat Barbra Fontana and Linda Hanley, 18-16, in the finals of the Austin Open beach volleyball tournament in Texas.

Randy Harvey is on vacation

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