Tennis: Stoltenberg hits heights in battle of wits

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The Independent Online
Jason Stoltenberg does not know how to feel about being a Wimbledon semi-finalist last year. On one hand he exceeded his wildest dreams; on the other he knows it was perhaps the best chance he will ever have to go the whole way. The 27-year-old Australian, ranked 30 in the world, did not have many backers to repeat the feat in 1997, and today's meeting on Centre Court with Yevgeny Kafelnikov, the No 3 seed, represents his biggest obstacle so far. Kafelnikov has been moving through the tournament with minimal fuss but, like his Russian opponent, Stoltenberg has been improving after injury problems at the start of the year. In their only previous meeting - on a hard court in Basle two years ago - Stoltenberg won in straight sets. An intriguing tactical battle is in prospect between two all-court players.

Simon O'Hagan

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