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Five-set upsets mark Day 2 French champ, Chang stumble at Wimbledon

WIMBLEDON, ENGLAND — WIMBLEDON, England -- He's 20. He's from New Jersey. And he's considered the future of American men's tennis.

Yesterday, Justin Gimelstob began to live up to the publicity surrounding his career by roaring into Wimbledon and slam-dunking French Open champion and No. 11-seeded Gustavo Kuerten, 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 1-6, 6-4.

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It was easily the biggest win of Gimelstob's career.

But it wasn't exactly what the crowd wanted.

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The fans who crammed into Court 3 yesterday came to cheer for Kuerten, known as Guga, and the unofficial novelty act of Wimbledon.

They cheered Guga's conservative all-white outfit -- he wore fluorescent yellow and blue in Paris. They cheered his outrageous ground strokes. They even cheered his grunts as he tried to make the transition from clay to grass.

Gimelstob had exactly one fan in the stands, his brother Russell, who was louder than the rest of the crowd. Gimelstob said the rest of his friends, family and fans were back home keeping track of the match on the Internet.

Point by point.

"Now, that's tough," Gimelstob said.

What the folks at home missed was a terrific match that started between rain delays Monday, was halted by darkness and ended yesterday with a Kuerten double fault.

"It was exciting," Gimelstob said. "He's a great player. I didn't know what to expect."

At Wimbledon, it looks as if the crowds may have to get used to new faces as the upsets began on Day 2.

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Todd Woodbridge beat No. 5 Michael Chang, 7-6 (7-5), 3-6, 6-2, 3-6, 8-6. After the marathon match, Chang matter-of-factly said he had played on a hyper-extended right knee.

Greg Rusedski of Great Britain unloaded 27 aces and finished his demolition of No. 7 Mark Philippoussis, 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (8-6), 6-3. Rusedski, who won the first two sets Monday before darkness halted play, appears to have a clear shot through to the quarterfinals.

Chris Wilkinson defeated No. 17 Jonas Bjorkman, 7-6 (7-5), 0-6, 5-7, 6-3, 6-4.

Some ex-champs provided a bit of order.

No. 1 Pete Sampras routed Mikael Tillstrom, 6-4, 6-4, 6-2. No. 8 Boris Becker overwhelmed Marcos Aurelio Gorriz, 6-3, 6-2, 6-3.

And in a tussle between unseeded players who used to be important figures on the tour, Michael Stich, ex-champ, beat Jim Courier, ex-finalist, 7-6 (7-0), 7-5, 7-6 (7-2).

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Stich will face Gimelstob in a match scheduled for today. And it will be tough to figure the favorite.

As a kid, Gimelstob played basketball and tennis. But after attending a summer basketball camp headed by Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski, Gimelstob decided to focus on tennis full-time.

The reason? Coach K told him he wouldn't be tall enough for basketball.

Gimelstob is now 6 feet 5, one of the tennis giants.

After leading UCLA to an NCAA team final in 1996, Gimelstob hit the tour last summer and ran right into reality, seven straight first-round losses.

"An abysmal start," he said.

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He also upset some veterans two years ago after he received a wild card into the U.S. Open and joked that he was only seven matches away from winning his first Grand Slam.

"A couple of guys took me aside and told me I had better keep my mouth shut," he said.

He toned down the quotes and stepped up his play, breaking the top 100 tour rankings. He also tried to ignore all the stories that portrayed him as the new Sampras or new Andre Agassi.

"It does get brought up a lot," he said. "It's a hot topic right now, that the U.S. doesn't have a top young player. I think it's cyclical. I don't think it's putting more pressure on me."

Gimelstob also had to deal with pressure off the court. His older brother Josh is awaiting sentencing for the hit-and-run death of a Tulane University policeman in January 1996.

The family is trying to keep the focus on tennis and Gimelstob's breakthrough victory.

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"He needed this win," Russell Gimelstob said. "The crowd doesn't know Justin yet. Once they know him, they'll like him."

Yesterday's results

Men's singles, first round

Doug Flach def. Ben Ellwood, 6-1, 7-6 (7-4), 3-6, 6-4; Guillaume Raoux def. Arnaud Boetsch, 6-3, 6-4, 6-1; Sandon Stolle def. Chris Woodruff, 6-2, 6-2, 6-4; Paul Haarhuis def. Sebastien Lareau, 6-1, 6-2, 7-6 (7-5); Mark Woodforde def. Leander Paes, 6-3, 7-5, 6-4; Wayne Ferreira (15) def. Scott Draper, 6-7 (5-7), 3-6, 6-4, 6-0, 7-5; Dennis van Scheppingen def. Rich ard Fromberg, 5-7, 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4; Magnus Norman def. Luis Herrera, 7-6 (8-6), 6-1, 6-4; Cedric Pioline def. Marcelo Charpentier, 5-7, 6-3, 7-5, 6-2; Francisco Clavet def. Nicolas Lapentti, 7-5, 6-1, 6-3; Frederik Fetterlein def. Jiri Novak, 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-3), 6-4; Jerome Golmard def. Jamie Delgado, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7 (4-7), 6-2; Todd Larkham def. Slava Dosedel, 6-7 (3-7), 6-3, 6-4, 7-5; David Rikl def. Daniel Vacek, 6-1, 6-3, 6-3; Emilio Alvarez def. Kenneth Carlsen, 6-7 (4-7), 3-6, 6-4, 6-1, 6-2; Rodolphe Gilbert def. Jeff Tarango, 3-6, 7-5, 7-6 (7-0), 6-4; Greg Rusedski def. Mark Philippoussis (7), 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (8-6), 6-3; Justin Gimelstob def. Gustavo Kuerten (11), 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 1-6, 6-4; Boris Becker (8) def. Marcos Aurelio Gorriz, 6-3, 6-2, 6-3; Arnaud Clement def. Luke Milligan, 2-6, 7-6 (7-1), 7-5, 6-2;

Chris Wilkinson def. Jonas Bjorkman (17), 7-6 (7-5), 0-6, 5-7, 6-3, 6-4; Richey Reneberg def. Hicham Arazi, 7-6 (8-6), 6-4, 7-6 (7-5); Hendrik Dreekmann def. Patrik Fredriksson, 6-3, 6-4, 6-3; Jason Stoltenberg def. Oscar Burrieza, 6-3, 6-4, 6-3; Jens Knippschild def. Wade McGuire, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4; Marzio Martelli def. Bernd Karbacher, 6-4, 6-3, 6-1; Marcelo Rios (9) def. Mahesh Bhupathi, 6-4, 6-4, 6-3; Michael Stich def. Jim Courier, 7-6 (7-0), 7-5, 7-6 (7-2); Yevgeny Kafelnikov (3) def. Juan-Antonio Marin, 6-4, 6-2, 6-0; Jonathan Stark def. Stephane Huet, 7-6 (7-5), 6-7 (5-7), 6-3, 2-6, 6-3;

Patrick Rafter (12) def. Grant Stafford, 2-6, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-2; Nicolas Kiefer def. Alexander Volkov, 6-4, 6-4, 6-2; Andrei Medvedev (13) def. Fabrice Santoro, 6-2, 6-3, 6-4; Thomas Johansson def. Dominik Hrbaty, 7-5, 6-3, 6-1; Nicklas Kulti def. Martin Sinner, 7-6 (7-3), 6-2, 6-3;

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Pete Sampras (1) def. Mikael Tillstrom, 6-4, 6-4, 6-2; John van Lottum def. Orlin Stanoytchev, 3-6, 2-6, 6-3, 6-1, 6-3; Neville Godwin def. Henrik Jan Davids, 7-5, 7-6 (7-2), 6-3; Mark Petchey def. Jan Kroslak, 6-1, 6-2, 6-1; Todd Woodbridge def. Michael Chang (5), 7-6 (7-5), 3-6, 6-2, 3-6, 8-6;

Marcos Ondruska def. Sjeng Schalken, 3-6, 7-5, 6-0, 0-1, retired; Alex O'Brien def. Henrik Holm, 7-6 (7-5), 6-4, 7-6 (7-4); Tommy Haas def. Christian Ruud, 6-2, 6-1, 6-2; Byron Black def. Pat Cash, 3-6, 7-6 (7-3), 6-4, 6-4; Petr Korda (16) def. Marcelo Filippini, 4-6, 7-6 (7-4), 6-1, 6-4;

Christophe Van Garsse def. Nick Weal, 6-1, 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-3); Magnus Gustafsson def. Vincent Spadea, 6-2, 6-1, 6-3; Martin Lee def. Nuno Marques, 7-5, 6-3, 6-3; Marc Rosset def. Karol Kucera, 7-5, 6-2, 6-3.

Women's singles, first round

Nicole Arendt def. Petra Langrova, 6-2, 6-0; Anke Huber (7) def. Haruka Inoue, 6-3, 6-3; Conchita Martinez (10) def. Karina Habsudova, 6-1, 6-2; Lisa Raymond def. Eva Martincova, 6-4, 6-2; Olga Barabanschikova def. Petra Begerow, 6-3, 6-3;

Brenda Schultz-McCarthy (14) def. Silvia Farina, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2; Joannette Kruger def. Stephanie de Ville, 7-6 (7-3), 6-3; Amanda Coetzer (6) def. Alexandra Fusai, 7-6 (12-10), 6-1; Marion Maruska def. Adriana Gersi, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2; Elena Makarova def. Tatiana Panova, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3;

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Kerry-Anne Guse def. Kimberly Po (13), 3-6, 7-5, 6-2; Arantxa Sanchez Vicario (8) def. Clare Wood, 6-0, 6-0; Martina Hingis (1) def. Anne Kremer, 6-4, 6-4; Yayuk Basuki def. Ai Sugiyama, 6-3, 6-0; Amy Frazier def. Sandra Cacic, 7-5, 6-4;

Anna Kournikova def. Chanda Rubin, 6-1, 6-1; Barbara Rittner def. Anna-Gaelle Sidot, 7-6 (8-6), 6-4; Helena Sukova def. Shirli-Ann Siddall, 7-6 (7-4), 6-1; Nathalie Dechy def. Laurence Courtois, 6-7 (6-8), 6-1, 6-2; Maria-Antonia Sanchez Lorenzo def. Flora Perfetti, 6-4, 6-4;

Sabine Appelmans def. Rene Simpson, 6-2, 3-6, 6-0; Laura Golarsa def. Alexia Dechaume-Balleret, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3; Karen Cross def. Linda Wild, 6-4, 6-2; Gigi Fernandez def. Miriam Oremans, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3; Andrea Glass def. Ruxandra Dragomir (15), 5-7, 6-2, 10-8;

Yuka Yoshida def. Rika Hiraki, 6-2, 6-3; Shi-Ting Wang def. Lori McNeil, 6-1, 2-6, 7-5.

Pub Date: 6/25/97


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