Tennis: Seles leaves hospital

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The Independent Online
MONICA SELES, stabbed by a German spectator in Hamburg on Friday, left hospital and returned to her Florida home yesterday.

'I want to thank all the people here who have helped me over these last few difficult days,' the world No 1 said in a statement before her departure. The statement, released by her agents, International Management Group, added: 'Monica is feeling a little better, but will remain under medical supervision for an undetermined period of time.'

Seles received only a minor wound when her attacker, Gunther Parche, 38, from the former East Germany, slipped past security guards with a hidden knife and stabbed her during a second-set changeover in her quarter-final against Magdalena Maleeva. The man, who has since been charged with attempted murder, claimed he wanted to help Steffi Graf recapture the world No 1 spot.

Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, who beat Graf 6-3, 6-3 in yesterday's final of the event, visited Seles in the morning. Seles was sleeping at the time but her brother Zoltan assured the Spaniard that she was feeling much better. When Graf visited on Saturday, she reported that Seles was severely depressed.

Meanwhile, the Women's Tennis Association decided to recognise Seles as winner alongside Sanchez Vicario so that she would not lose any ranking points because of the stabbing.

Seles is not expected to play for at least a month and is unlikely to defend her title at the French Open, which begins on 24 May.

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