Sabatini gives lesson to Rubin, 16

March 06, 1992

BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Chanda Rubin, 16, said she wasn't nervous about facing Gabriela Sabatini. Maybe she should have been.

Sabatini eliminated Rubin in 69 minutes yesterday with a 6-2, 6-2 third-round victory at the Virginia Slims of Florida.

"She's not that intimidating," said Rubin, a high school junior from Lafayette, La. "She's just another player. That's how I wanted to think about her."

Thinking of her that way didn't make it so. Sabatini is the No. 2 seed and two-time defending champion, and she looked like it against the youngest player in the draw.

"I felt I was in control of the match all the time," Sabatini said.

The tournament's top five seeds remained in control and in contention.

Amanda Coetzer of South Africa became the only unseeded player to reach today's quarterfinals when she eliminated No. 8 Judith Wiesner of Austria, 6-3, 6-1. Coetzer's reward: an afternoon match against Sabatini.

Facing the same challenge, shots sailed wildly off Rubin's racket as she loosened up. Bad nerves? Nah.

"When I warm up, I always shank a few," the teen-ager said.

Once play began, Sabatini paraded all of her weapons past Rubin. The Argentine whistled backhands down the line and forehands crosscourt, but most of her winners came on drop shots.

"Her loop balls really kicked out wide, and I couldn't get back, and she had the open court," Rubin said. "She has a good touch."


Third round

Gabriela Sabatini (2), Argentina, def. Chanda Rubin, Lafayette, La., 6-2, 6-2. Mary Joe Fernandez (3), Miami, def. Laura Gildemeister (10), Peru, 6-3, 7-5. Conchita Martinez (4), Spain, def. Kimiko Date (11), Japan, 6-1, 7-6 (7-3). Nathalie Tauziat (5), France, def. Radka Zrubakova (12), Czechoslovakia, 6-2, 7-6 (7-4).

Zina Garrison (7), Houston, def. Brenda Schultz (15), Netherlands, 7-5, 4-6, 6-3. Barbara Rittner (16), Germany, def. Leila Meskhi (6), Georgia, 6-2, 6-3. Amanda Coetzer, South Africa, def. Judith Wiesner (8), Austria, 6-3, 6-1.


Second round

Shaun Stafford, Gainesville, Fla., and Marianne Werdel, Palo Alto, Calif., def. Nathalie Tauziat, France, and Judith Wiesner, Austria, 6-4, 7-6 (7-4). Meredith McGrath, Midland, Mich., and Rennae Stubbs, Australia, def. Renata Baranski, Rock Hill, S.C., and Hellas Ter Riet, Netherlands, 6-1, 6-0.

Kristin Godridge, Australia, and Alexia Dechaume, France, def. Sandy Collins, Odessa, Texas, and Elna Reinach, South Africa, 6-4, 7-5. Eva Pfaff, Germany, and Catherine Suire, France, def. Akiko Kijimuta and Naoko Sawamatsu, Japan, 6-2, 3-6, 6-0.

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