Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Peerless Pete to Consider Future

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Peerless Pete to Consider Future

Article excerpt


PETE SAMPRAS is going to take a break from tennis, and decide if a record 14th Grand Slam triumph at the US Open last night is the perfect end to a brilliant career.

Sampras defeated arch-rival Andre Agassi 6-3, 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 in 2hrs 54mins at Flushing Meadows in New York, and the victory gave the US Open what it craved most - two home-grown champions in Serena Williams and Sampras - in the build up to the 11 September anniversary.

It also left Britain's Greg Rusedski looking ridiculous.

Rusedski said, after losing to 17th seed Sampras in the third round: "He's not playing great and I will be surprised if he wins his next match.

"His fitness and movement are not the same and you are used to seeing Pete Sampras the 13-times Slam champion on court. It's not the same player, he's a great player from the past."

The man Rusedski wrote off responded by rewriting the record books.

Sampras believes this Slam victory is the greatest of the 14, and said: "This one might take the cake, and I never thought anything would surpass Wimbledon 2000 but to play like that was awesome.

"I am going to experience parenthood in the next few months and I hope I am good role model for our child. I am going to have to weigh it all up. I still love to compete, but to beat Andre at the US Open final might be a storybook ending.

"There has been a lot of support from my wife, family and Paul Annacone gave me peace of mind and stability. It all worked out, so much of what I was going through this year was mental.

"Maybe, Andre and I will do it again next year. My head's spinning at the moment and I want to take time and reflect on it all. I want to stop on my terms, and that is something I have promised myself.

"I peaked against Andre, after having to play five matches in seven days. He is the best I have ever played, and brings the best out of me. It was one of the toughest second weeks I have known.

Maybe it was destiny to be in the final against Andre."

Sampras, 31 years old, grabbed hold of the match right from the start against the 32-year-old Agassi, and the crowd loved it. …

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