Tennis: Martinez strikes blow for the oldies

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The Independent Online
Conchita Martinez ended Anna Kournikova's run at the German Open yesterday, routing the nervous teenager in straight sets to reach the final in Berlin. Martinez swept through the first set in just 19 minutes in the battle of generations, slowing down the pace with soft shots and slices to win 6-0, 6-1 against Kournikova, the 16-year-old Russian who had beaten the top seed Martina Hingis and Spain's Arantxa Sanchez Vicario to reach the semi-finals. "The young players are coming on strong, but we're still here," said Martinez, the 1994 Wimbledon champion. "My God, I'm only 26. When we play well, we definitely have our chances." She will face another youngster in the final. The French qualifier Amelie Mauresmo, 18, needed six match points and 2hr 27min to beat the world No. 3 Jana Novotna, 7-5, 5-7, 6-4. Mauresmo also beat the No. 2, Lindsay Davenport, in the second round and became the lowest-ranked player at No. 65 to beat two world top-three players at the same event.

She also is the first qualifier to reach the final of an elite tournament.