Kriek to Play 17-Year-Old Becker Today
Johan Kriek, a South African-born American, will meet Boris Becker, a 17-year-old West German, in the final of the $250,000 Queen’s Club grass court tennis tournament today.
The fourth-seeded Kriek defeated Yugoslavia’s Slobodan Zivojinovic, 6-4, 6-4, Saturday in this traditional pre-Wimbledon event at London. In the other semifinal, the 11th-seeded Becker overpowered Australia’s Paul McNamee, 6-1, 6-4.
Kriek had to play twice Saturday. In a delayed quarterfinal match, he outlasted New Zealand’s Russell Simpson, 6-4, 7-6, but was fined $750 for bad language.
Twice in one game, Kriek swore at the umpire, Richard Kaufman of Seattle, for which he received a warning for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Later, he was seen to spit in the direction of the chair and was docked a penalty point.
Kriek later defended himself. “It’s not always the player’s fault out there,” he said. “Sometimes the guy in the chair is on an ego trip and gets very obnoxious.”
Against Zivojinovic, Kriek kept his temper in check and played outstanding tennis to set up his first-ever meeting with Becker, ranked 29th in the world after rising over 300 places in the ratings since last summer.
Becker, playing in only his fourth grass court event, upset third-seeded Pat Cash earlier this week.
Pam Shriver served and volleyed her way to the final of a $125,000 women’s tournament at Birmingham, England, beating Elise Burgin, her lifelong friend and neighbor, 6-4, 6-2, in 55 minutes.
Shriver, the defending champion, will meet Betsy Nagelsen in today’s final. Nagelsen defeated Susan Mascarin, 3-6, 7-5, 6-1.