Sanchez Vicario Put in Same Half of Draw as Seles


The top eight seeded players in the $350,000 Virginia Slims of Los Angeles received first-round byes at the tournament draw Friday and won’t play until Tuesday. The 56-player tournament will begin Monday on the hard courts of the Manhattan Country Club in Manhattan Beach.

Defending champion and top-seeded Monica Seles, the Australian Open and French Open champion, will face the winner of a first-round match between South Africa’s Elna Reinach and Britain’s Clare Wood. Seles lost to Jennifer Capriati in the final of a tournament in San Diego on Aug. 4.

The 17-year-old Seles, from Yugoslavia, could meet third-seeded Arantxa Sanchez Vicario in the semifinals. Sanchez Vicario, the 1989 French Open champion, is winless in five matches against Seles, most recently in the French Open final in June.


“I don’t have anything to lose against Monica,” said Sanchez Vicario, who arrived from Barcelona Thursday night. The 19-year-old Spaniard will play the winner of the match between wild-card entry Alysia May and Isabelle Demongeot of France.

“I play pretty good now,” Sanchez Vicario said. “I win good matches. I don’t feel any pressure. I’m just going to go straight, match to match, and hopefully get to the final.”

Second-seeded Gabriela Sabatini of Argentina, the 1990 U.S. Open champion, will play the winner of Monday’s match between former UCLA All-American Patricia Hy and South African Rosalyn Fairbank-Nideffer.

Fourth-seeded Zina Garrison was originally seeded fifth, but moved up after Mary Joe Fernandez withdrew Thursday because of illness. Garrison, ranked No. 11 in the world, will face the winner of the match between Peanut Louie-Harper and Jo Durie.