Australian Open : Edberg Rallies for Victory in 100-Degree Heat
Sweden’s Stefan Edberg and Mats Wilander moved into the second round of the $1.9-million Australian Open amid controversy over the venue’s new retractable roof Tuesday.
Edberg, the world’s No. 2-ranked player and Australian Open champion in 1985 and 1987, lost the opening set against Marty Davis but rebounded in 100-degree heat for a 4-6, 6-2, 6-2, 7-5 victory at Melbourne.
It took Wilander, No. 3 in the world and Australian Open champion in 1983 and 1984, time to get his footing before beating 80th-ranked Richey Reneberg, 7-6, 6-1, 6-3.
Top-seeded Steffi Graf was an easy winner.
Graf, the top women’s player who is competing in her first Australian Open in three years, beat Norway’s Amy Jonsson, 6-3, 6-1, and fifth-seeded Hana Mandlikova, the defending women’s champion, defeated Yugoslavia’s Mima Jausovec, 6-4, 6-1.
For the first time in the history of Grand Slam tennis, some of the night matches were played indoors. A light rain began to fall and officials ordered the closure of the retractable 700-ton roof of the new $50 million Flinders Park Stadium.
The other Grand Slam tournaments--Wimbledon and the U.S. and French opens--are played only outdoors.
Wilander, after his match, criticized officials for using the sliding roof in the light rain.
“I don’t think it’s fair,” he said. “It makes two tournaments in one. I think Grand Slams should be staged outdoors. They should only use the roof for emergencies.”
Edberg needed 2 hours 11 minutes to oust the 99th-ranked Davis, who frustrated Edberg in the first set by attacking the defending champion’s first service. A string of unforced errors then allowed Edberg into the match.
A light drizzle stopped play in the Graf-Jonsson match with Graf leading, 2-0, in the second set. Jonsson upset Graf’s rhythm early by attacking her forehand. The move surprised Graf, who then added power to her shots.
“She was tougher than I thought,” Graf said. “She has a strange service. I was happy with my game, but I need more matches.”
The match was Graf’s first in the Australian Open since 1984, when she was ousted in the third round.
“I was 15 in 1984, and three years is a long time at that age,” Graf said. “I think I have improved since then.”
Mandlikova showed a strong touch against Jausovec. After the match, Mandlikova, who became a naturalized Australian 10 days ago, refused to answer questions on whether she would play for Czechoslovakia in the Seoul Olympics.
Fourth-seeded Shriver, sixth-seeded Helena Sukova of Czechoslovakia and ninth-seeded Lori McNeil also advanced in women’s singles.
Shriver eliminated West Germany’s Eva Pfaff, 6-1, 6-3; Sukova beat Jamie Golder, 6-2, 6-2, and McNeil defeated DeeAnn Hansel, 6-2, 6-1.
Heather Ludloff of Foster City, Calif., turned in the only women’s upset with a 6-1, 6-3 victory over 16th-seeded Liz Smylie of Australia.
Three men’s seeded players were beaten. Andrei Chesnokov of the Soviet Union upset 10th-seeded Amos Mansdorf of Israel, 6-3, 4-6, 7-5, 6-2; Brod Dyke of Australia defeated ninth-seeded Jakob Hlasek of Czechoslovakia, 6-3, 6-3, 6-4, and Jeremy Bates of Britain ousted 15th-seeded Kelly Evernden of New Zealand, 7-5, 5-7, 6-1, 6-7, 6-3.