Sampras destroys Black

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The Independent Online

Pete Sampras, playing in his first tournament since the Australian Open, routed the qualifier Byron Black 6-1, 6-2 in 44 minutes at the Franklin Templeton Classic at Scottsdale.

Sampras dropped only three points on serve in Tuesday evening's match, and two of those were double-faults. Sampras said: "This tournament is important going into Indian Wells. I want to be sharp and get into a rhythm."

Andre Agassi avenged back-to-back defeats against the defending champion, Francisco Clavet, with a 6-3, 6-2 win over the Spaniard. The American top seed lost to Clavet in the first round last year and the second round in 2000, but needed little more than an hour to beat the 33-year-old, 6-3, 6-2.

Agassi, a three-times winner in the Arizona event, said: "It's amazing to play the same guy three straight years. I was coming here with the expectations of the ball flying off my racket but I was able to stay in control the entire match."

In Delray Beach, Florida, the defending champion, Jan-Michael Gambill, defeated Wayne Arthurs for the second time in a week to reach the second round of the ATP International Championship. Gambill beat the Australian in the San Jose quarter-finals last week.

The American saved a match point in the final-set tie-break to progress to the second round with a 6-7, 6-3, 7-6 victory. Joining Gambill in the second round was the top seed, Andy Roddick, who came back from 4-1 down in the first set to defeat the Russian Nikolay Davydenko 6-4, 6-1 and now meets Hyung-Taik Lee, who beat David Sanchez, of Spain, 6-2, 6-3.