Tennis Roundup : Despite Slow Start, Evert Prevails at New Orleans

<i> From Times Wire Services </i>

Top-seeded Chris Evert had to overcome a 3-0, first-set deficit Sunday to win a match she said she could not afford to lose in the final of the Virginia Slims of New Orleans tournament at Kenner, La.

Evert rallied to defeat Anne Smith, 6-4, 6-1, after Smith had service breaks in the first and third games of the match.

In the second set, Smith did not score a point until halfway through the third game, the only one she won in the set.

“I had lost a little bit of confidence,” said the 34-year-old Evert, who had been upset in the Olympics by Raffaella Reggi. “I can’t afford to lose to a player not to my standards. It hurts my confidence.


“Today would have been a bad loss,” Evert added. “I expected to play Monica (Seles), who is physically tougher. Anne is easy.”

Smith, who had undergone shoulder surgery earlier in the year, had defeated the 14-year-old Seles in the semifinals.

Evert said she “got the kinks out” in a 6-1, 6-1 semifinal victory over Stephanie Rehe on Saturday.

“I couldn’t be ranked No. 1 the way I’ve been playing this week, but I didn’t lose a set,” Evert said.


At Basel, Switzerland, Stefan Edberg of Sweden won his third Swiss Indoor title with a 7-5, 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 victory over Switzerland’s Jakob Hlasek in the final of the $270,000 event.

Edberg was leading, 2-1, in sets when he won 12 points in a row. Seeded No. 1, Edberg made 35 points on his serve, either by aces or by forcing errors.

“It was my best match since Wimbledon,” Edberg said. “I had to play Hlasek’s backhand, and I felt I was serving very well.”

At Brisbane, Australia, top-seeded Tim Mayotte won the $195,000 Queensland indoor championship with a 6-4, 6-4 victory over Marty Davis at Boondall Stadium.

Mayotte won the match in just 80 minutes. He broke Davis’ serve in the seventh game of the first set to lead, 4-3, before serving out for the set. He then broke again in the second set for a 2-1 lead.

Davis, ranked 132nd in the world, broke back but immediately dropped his serve, leaving Mayotte to serve out the match, which was a rematch of the National Collegiate Athletic Assn. final almost a decade ago. Davis was the upset winner that time.