Tennis: Sampras and Courier eliminated

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PETE SAMPRAS, the Wimbledon champion, was beaten 7-6, 6-3 by New Zealand's Brett Steven in the the second round of the Canadian Open in Montreal yesterday.

The American's defeat completed a day of surprises for the top seeds with Jim Courier, the runner-up at Wimbledon, losing 6-3, 6-2 to Mikael Pernfors, of Sweden, and Boris Becker being defeated 7-5, 7-6 by another American, Todd Martin.

'I simply played a bad match on a bad day,' Sampras said. 'I'm going to wake up tomorrow and it's a new day. He played good tennis so he deserved to win the match.'

Steven, sensing Sampras was having an off-day and was impatient on court, kept the ball deep and slow, never allowing his opponent any pace to get into his rhythm.

'It feels very good but I think it will sink in a little better in a little while,' Steven said. 'I'm in a little bit of a daze right now.' At 6-6 in the first set tie- break, Steven won the last two points and then took the second set courtesy of a break of service in the sixth game.

Andre Agassi and Ivan Lendl reached the quarter-finals after victories over Michael Chang and Aaron Krickstein respectively.