Tennis: Becker makes winning return

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The Independent Online
BORIS BECKER, the world No 4, made a successful return to the ATP tour when he beat Brazil's Jaime Oncins 6-3, 3-6, 6-1 in the first round of the Nice Open yesterday.

Becker, 25, has not completed a tournament since he was forced to pull out of the Eurocard Open in Stuttgart in February because of a viral infection. He has also missed events in Rotterdam and Osaka, as well as dropping out in the third round at Key Biscayne last month.

Five of the world's top 10 have entered this tournament including Stefan Edberg, the No 3 and top seed, and Goran Ivanisevic, the No 6, who play today. The other two, Ivan Lendl and Petr Korda, both had comfortable first-round wins.

Marc Rosset, the Olympic champion from Switzerland, became the first seed to be eliminated, losing 2-6, 7-6, 6-4 to Javier Sanchez, of Spain.

In the Hong Kong Open, Pete Sampras made a successful start as the new world No 1, defeating France's Stephane Simian 6-2, 6-4 in the first round. Jim Courier, the player Sampras displaced, begins his challenge today against Britain's Jeremy Bates.