Tennis: Rusedski back in winning mood

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The Independent Online
GREG RUSEDSKI, playing in only his second tournament after an injury to his left ankle kept him out for seven weeks, overcame a broken right shoe during the tie-breaker to beat Fernando Meligeni of Brazil 6-2, 7-6 in the second round of the Hamlet Cup in New York.

Meligeni initially thought Rusedski was stalling for time as he changed shoes with the second-set tie-break level at 2-2 on Wednesday night. The British No 1 went on to take the tie-break 8-6 and advance into the quarter finals. "The heel actually fell off," Rusedski said afterwards. "I can't help it if my shoe fell apart and I certainly did not want to risk another broken ankle. I showed it to the officials and actually pulled on the shoe to show them the break.

"Finally Meligeni believed me. What else could he do? The evidence was there."

Rusedski committed 38 unforced errors, but "that is of no concern as long as I won," he said. "It takes seven matches to win the US Open and all seven aren't going to be outstanding."

David Prinosil of Germany, a late replacement for the injured Yevgeny Kafelnikov, beat the defending Hamlet champion and world No 10, Carlos Moya of Spain, 6-2, 6-2. Meanwhile Matt Safin, an 18-year-old Russian, reached his first ATP tournament quarter-final by defeating Filip Dewulf of Belgium 7-6, 6-1, and Daniel Vacek of the Czech Republic upset the ninth seed, Jan Siemerink of the Netherlands, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.

The women's professional tennis tour plans to establish a code of ethics for coaches, designed to "promote the welfare and protection" of female players. Penalties could include a ban from tournaments.

Rumours concerning various examples of the abuse of young women in their sport, many of them adolescents, have circulated for years. In 1994, Mary Pierce's father, Jim Pierce, was banned from attending tournaments on the Women's Tennis Association Tour because of his "disruptive behaviour".

Cases of the so-called "burn out" syndrome involving teenage prodigies - notably the American Jennifer Capriati, who spent time at a drug rehabilitation centre - led to an age eligibility rule in 1995. This restricted players under 16 from participation in the four Grand Slam Championships. The WTA tour intends to put the code of ethics in place for the start of next year. Its proposals will first be circulated for comment world wide to coaches, current and former players, sports psychologists and other interested parties.

"The code of ethics offers general principles to guide the conduct of coaches in situations that have ethical implications," Bart McQuire, the WTA tour's chief executive, said. "We believe that the code is an important tool for educating coaches - and players - about the professional responsibilities of coaches. Violations of the code will be dealt with seriously. Penalties could include, among other things, the revocation of on-site privileges."

Results, Digest, page 23

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