Tennis: Courier comes to US rescue

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The Independent Online
(First Edition)

JIM COURIER rescued the United States, following a surprise defeat of the world No 1 Pete Sampras, by defeating Jacco Eltingh in the deciding rubber of the Davis Cup quarter-final against the Netherlands in Rotterdam yesterday.

After Richard Krajicek beat Sampras earlier in the day to keep the Dutch alive, Courier overcame Eltingh

6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 6-1, giving the United States a 3-2 victory.

'I didn't think I'd have to play another live match,' Courier said. 'But the bottom line is we got the job done.' The Americans will now play Sweden, who beat France 3-2 in Cannes, in the semi-finals in September.

Michael Stich took Germany, the holders, through to the Davis Cup last four after a tough victory over Spain's Sergi Bruguera in Halle.

Stich gave Germany an unbeatable 3-1 lead by winning 7-6, 5-7, 7-5, 6-2 in the first reverse singles, ensuring that his team would play Russia in September. Russia came from behind to edge out the Czech Republic 3-2 in Moscow.

Stich, the 1991 Wimbledon champion and world No 4, won the first-set tie-break 7-4 but the clay-court specialist and French Open champion, who is improving on grass all the time, took the second after Stich saved four set points. In the third Bruguera squandered two break points that would have given him a 2-0 lead and by the fourth his opponent was in control.

Trailing 2-1 after losing Saturday's doubles, the Russians won both reverse singles when Yevgeny Kafelnikov beat Petr Korda 6-4, 6-1, 2-6, 6-4 and Andrei Olhovskiy defeated Slava Dosedel 6-2, 2-6, 7-6, 6-3.

Results, Sporting Digest, page 31