Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Top Contenders to Watch for on Wimbledon's Center Court

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Top Contenders to Watch for on Wimbledon's Center Court

Article excerpt

This year's Wimbledon draw promises some intriguing encounters between young and "older" players, and between seeded players and bothersome early-round opponents. Apart from Monica Seles, who doesn't return to tennis until next month, the only notable absentees are the clay court specialists Thomas Muster (resting after his victory in the French Open), and the 1994 French Open finalists, Sergi Bruguera (champion) and Alberto Berasategui, who have withdrawn because of injury.

The top seed in the women's draw, Steffi Graf, recently regained her No. 1 ranking along with her fourth French Open title. Provided she's truly fit, has the sort of momentum that could carry her to her sixth Wimbledon women's singles title.

Her main rivals will be defending champion Conchita Martinez and the world's No. 2, Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, even though Sanchez Vicario has not got past the quarterfinals in eight Wimbledon appearances.

Fifth-seeded Mary Pierce (who won last year's French Open) may be too preoccupied with her first experience on Wimbledon's grass to challenge seriously. …

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