Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Fellow Swede Brings Edberg to Sour End; Sampras Advances

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Fellow Swede Brings Edberg to Sour End; Sampras Advances

Article excerpt

A sprained wrist cost Stefan Edberg the first set. A wild serve off the frame cost him the second. A fellow Swede who used him for target practice at the net cost him the match and a shot at a third U.S. Open title.

It was all that and more - the uncanny luck of net cords and mis-hits and wind blown balls - and it added up to Edberg's third-round exit after losing 6-4, 6-4, 6-0, to Jonas Bjorkman in just over 90 minutes on a chilly Sunday evening.

"The guy probably had his Christmas today," the fifth-seeded Edberg said.

"This is a dream for me," said the 71st-ranked Bjorkman, who grew up admiring and imitating Edberg.

Nine of the 16 men's seeds have failed to reach the round of 16.

Edberg, a righthander, hurt his right wrist while lunging for a volley when he began serving at 5-4 in the first set. He sprawled on the court, lay there a moment, and got up gingerly, rubbing and shaking his wrist. The injury wasn't enough to stop him, but it obviously affected his play, and he proceeded to lose his serve.

"It's something like twisting your ankle," Edberg said. "After a couple of points it was feeling better, but it probably cost me the first set. It was bad timing. It didn't bother me the rest of the match. But I lost my momentum. It'll probably be sore tomorrow. It's one of the nastiest falls I've had."

After getting treatment from a trainer on the next changeover, Edberg played even with Bjorkman until he again trailed 5-4. Edberg slipped to one knee while losing the first point, stood frozen at the net to lose the next, and went to break point when Bjorkman made a spectacular running forehand pass cross court. Perhaps trying to do too much, Edberg double-faulted to lose the set, smacking the second serve off his frame and about 30 feet long.

Pete Sampras had a day he'd like to

forget, too, but he survived.

Sampras rarely loses his cool about anything, but on this day even the vagaries of the net cord threw Sampras off. It got so frustrating for the defending champion and top seed that at one point he bent down to measure the net with his racket. …

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