Squillari Teaches Costa a Clay Court Lesson

Published June 7th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Franco Squillari of Argentina handed a quarterfinal clay court lesson to Albert Costa of Spain, Wednesday, advancing a step closer to becoming the second Argentine men's singles champion at the French Open. 

The win took Squillari 3hr 4min and he waved both arms wearily aloft in triumph. 

"I'm delighted to be in the semifinal. It's a unique moment for me," he said. 

"I can't believe the match I played - the tennis was of a very high level. I managed to give him the run around a bit." 

The 23-year-old Argentine defeated the Spaniard 6-4, 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 and Squillari will now play the winner of the match between ATP Champions Race leader Sweden's Magnus Norman, and Russian 12th seed Marat Safin in Friday's semifinals. 

Friday's other semi will pit Brazilian fifth seed Gustavo Kuerten against 20-year-old Spanish newcomer Juan Carlos Ferrero. 

The women's singles semifinals will be played, Thursday, when final French hope Mary Pierce takes on top seed Martina Hingis - seeking the only Grand Slam singles title she has yet to win - and three-time champion Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario faces fellow Spaniard Conchita Martinez, the fifth seed. 

Sixth-seeded pair Alexandra Fusai and Nathalie Tauziat of France beat Martina Navrtilova and Mariaan de Swardt 2-6, 6-2, 7-5 to advance to the quarterfinals. 

Navratilova, 43, has linked with South African de Swardt to play doubles at four events this summer - culminating with Wimbledon later this month, where Navratilova could win a record 20th title - (AFP) 

 

© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

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