Arazi Quietly Advances Amidst Numerous Upsets
While the media spotlight was on the scores of seeded players who were upset, Moroccan tennis star Hicham Arazi routinely disposed of his opponent Slava Dosedel, 6-4, 6-2, to advance to the third round of the Tennis Masters Series-Indian Wells.
After recording what he termed his "best match ever" on Monday, when he upset world number one Andre Agassi, many were expecting Arazi to suffer from a letdown against his unheralded opponent. Arazi, however, proved his skeptics wrong by maintaining his focus and cruising into the third round.
The match of the day clearly featured tournament number two seed Pete Sampras versus South African Wayne Ferreria. Sampras struggled but survived, rebounding from a 0-3 deficit in the third set tiebreaker to prevail 3-6, 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-5). Suffering from an assortment of injuries, Sampras had played only one match since the Australian Open entering this week's tournament, and the rust clearly showed against the talented Ferreira. Sampras hit 12 double faults and was thankful to defeat Ferreira, an opponent who had won 5 of their 10 previous encounters.
Upsets were the central theme of Wednesday's action. Six seeded players fell in the men's draw - Number 3 Yevgeny Kafelnikov, number 5 Gustavo Kuerten, number 7 Marcelo Rios, number 11 Tim Henman, number 15 Greg Rusedski and number 16 Lleyton Hewitt.
In the women's draw, Martina Hingis and Mary Pierce both rolled into the semi-finals. Hingis routed comeback-bound Monica Seles 6-3, 6-1, while Pierce surprised American teenager Serena Williams 6-2, 6-1.
Photograph courtesy of 1st Serve (www.1stserve.com).
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)