International Players Championships : Lendl and Connors Advance; Mecir Forced to Withdraw

Associated Press

Top-ranked Ivan Lendl lost his concentration but still won his second-round match in straight sets Wednesday at the International Players Championships.

Lendl said his mind wandered as he swept Jim Pugh, 6-3, 6-1, 6-1.

“That was my biggest problem--concentration,” Lendl said. “I was letting it slip and I was trying crazy shots. But I was able to recover and get out of trouble when I was in a little bit of it.”

In a later match at the International Tennis Center, fourth-seeded Jimmy Connors beat Arnaud Boetsch of France, 7-6, 6-1, 6-1. Connors won the tiebreaker, 7-3.


Many of the highest-seeded players in the two-week, $2.1-million tournament had the day off. Miloslav Mecir, the 1987 champion, withdrew because of a back injury suffered last week at Indian Wells.

Mecir, who won Tuesday despite his bad back, decided against trying to play his second-round match. He planned to return home to see a doctor and said he didn’t know whether the injury would force him to miss Davis Cup competition.

Mary Joe Fernandez, the women’s ninth-seeded player, also won a night match at the International Tennis Center, beating Cathy Caverzasio of Switzerland, 6-2, 7-5.

Beth Herr upset No. 14-seeded Catarina Lindqvist of Sweden, 6-7, 6-4, 6-3.


Manuela Maleeva hurt her right ankle early in the second set but still beat Gigi Fernandez of Miami, 6-2, 6-2.