Pierce gets dressing-down from Rittner, fans in loss Sampras needs five sets to turn back Martin

French Open

June 01, 1996|By NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE

PARIS -- Wearing the little black tennis dress that has launched a thousand wolf whistles and raised more than a thousand eyebrows among the sport's fashion police, a quite contrary Mary Pierce, the next-to-last French Open hope of her not-so-native France, was whistled off Center Court yesterday in a hail of derisive jeers.

The 12th-seeded Pierce was upset, 6-4, 6-2, by Germany's Barbara Rittner.

Ranked 82d in the world and a loser to Pierce in all four of their previous meetings, Rittner managed to ignore the Pierce decolletage -- which has proven a great distraction and an

irreverent marketing device for its maker, Nike -- and the Pierce agenda.

"Everybody knows she's trying to argue and she's trying not to take a lot of time, to break your rhythm," said the methodical Rittner, "so I didn't recognize her doing this. I tried to put pressure on herself from myself."

Rittner converted the first chance she had to thwart Pierce. She broke a 4-4 first-set stalemate by breaking Pierce, then calmly served for the set.

"Then she got nervous and I started to play better," said Rittner, ++ "and then it was a pretty easy second set."

The match between top-seeded Pete Sampras and 18th-ranked Todd Martin did not have the querulous edge of Pierce-Rittner, and the tennis was often sublimely contested. Sampras, a five-set winners, has occasionally felt like quitting this tournament, where the slow clay has aggravated him to the point of a temper tantrum, but not this year.

One round after handing a five-set loss to two-time champion Sergi Bruguera, the consummate clay artisan, Sampras was undaunted by Martin's 29 aces and outlasted his golfing buddy, 3-6, 6-4, 7-5, 4-6, 6-2, in 3 hours, 21 minutes. Sampras served 20 aces of his own. and now has designs on capturing his first French Open.

Pierce wasn't the only glamour name to disappear from the women's draw. The 15-year-old and 15th-seeded Martina Hingis, the precocious baseliner who defeated Steffi Graf in Rome three weeks ago, put in a petulant performance on Center Court, where 26th-ranked Karina Habsudova of Slovakia sneaked past her with a 4-6, 7-5, 6-4 comeback.

Men's singles, third round

Richard Krajicek (13), Netherlands, def. Todd Woodbridge, Australia, 7-5, 6-2, 6-2. Jonas Bjorkman, Sweden, def. Chris Woodruff, Knoxville, Tenn., 7-6 (7-5), 2-6, 4-6, 7-5, 6-4. Scott Draper, Australia, def. Jeff Tarango, Manhattan Beach, Calif., 6-1, 6-2, 6-3. Francisco Clavet, Spain, def. Guy Forget, France, 6-3, 7-5, 6-3. Pete Sampras (1), Tampa, Fla., def. Todd Martin, Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., 3-6, 6-4, 7-5, 4-6, 6-2. Jim Courier (7), Miami, def. Karol Kucera, Slovakia, 6-7 (2-7), 7-5, 6-4, 5-4, ret. Wayne Ferreira (10), South Africa, def. Renzo Furlan, Italy, 6-7 (5-7), 7-5, 6-1, 7-5. Yevgeny Kafelnikov (6), Russia, def. Felix Mantilla, Spain, 6-4, 6-2, 6-2.

Doubles, second round

Lan Bale, South Africa, and Stephen Noteboom, Netherlands, def. Sandon Stolle and Jason Stoltenberg, Australia, 6-3, 7-6 (8-6). Donald Johnson, Chapel Hill, N.C., and Francisco Montana, Miami, def. Mark Knowles, Bahamas, and Daniel Nestor (2), Canada, 3-6, 7-5, 6-3. Jared Palmer, Tampa, Fla., and Jonathan Stark, Seattle, def. Byron Black, Zimbabwe, and Grant Connell (3), Canada, 7-6 (7-5), 7-5. Trevor Kronemann, Bradenton, Fla., and David MacPherson, Australia, def. Paul Haarhuis and Sjeng Schalken, Netherlands, 6-3, 4-6, 6-1. Stefan Edberg, Sweden, and Petr Korda (14), Czech Republic, def. Jean-Philippe Fleurian and Guillaume Raoux, France, 6-3, 7-5. Libor Pimek, Belgium, and Byron Talbot (11), South Africa, def. Jordi Arrese, Spain, and Stefano Pescosolido, Italy, 6-4, 6-3. Jim Grabb, Tucson, Ariz., and Richey Reneberg, Minneapolis, def. Patrik Kuhnen, Germany, and Gary Muller, South Africa, 6-7 (4-7), 6-3, 6-3. Guy Forget, France, and Jakob Hlasek (5), Switzerland, def. Karel Novacek, Czech Republic, and Vincent Spadea, Boca Raton, Fla., 4-6, 6-3,

Women's singles, third round

Anke Huber (6), Germany, def. Sarah Pitkowski, France, 6-2, 6-2. Monica Seles, (1), Sarasota, Fla., def. Sabine Appelmans, Belgium, 6-2, 7-5. Jana Novotna (10), Czech Republic, def. Elena Makarova, Russia, 6-1, 7-5. Barbara Rittner, Germany, def. Mary Pierce (12), France, 6-4, 6-2. Arantxa Sanchez Vicario (4), Spain, def. Elena Likhovtseva, Russia, 6-0, 6-0. Irina Spirlea, Romania, def. Brenda Schultz-McCarthy (8), Netherlands, 6-3, 3-6, 6-2. Karina Habsudova, Slovakia, def. Martina Hingis (15), Switzerland, 4-6, 7-5, 6-4. Magdalena Maleeva (13), Bulgaria, def. Miriam Oremans, Netherlands, 6-2, 6-1.

Doubles, second round

Meredith McGrath, Midland, Mich., and Larisa Neiland, Latvia, def. Kristine Radford, Australia, and Shaun Stafford, Gainesville, Fla., 6-0, 6-3. Lindsay Davenport, Murrieta, Calif., and Mary Joe .. Fernandez, Key Biscayne, Fla., def. Kyoko Nagatsuka and Ai Sugiyama, Japan, 6-3, 6-1. Nicole Arendt, Gainesville, Fla., and Manon Bollegraf, Netherlands, def. Petra Langrova, Czech Republic, and Radka Zrubakova, Slovakia, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4. Conchita Martinez, Spain, and Patricia Tarabini, Argentina, def. Asa Carlsson, Sweden, and Andrea Temesvari, Hungary, 6-3, 5-7, 6-3. Yayuk Basuki, Indonesia, and Caroline Vis, Netherlands, def. Karine Quentrec-Eagle and Anne-Gaelle Sidot, France, 6-4, 6-4. Julie Halard Decugis and Nathalie Tauziat, France, def. Nanne Dahlman, Finland, and Clare Wood, Britain, 5-7, 6-1, 7-5.

Pub Date: 6/01/96

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