uo97rafter.agassi

uo97rafter.agassi

Points won by each set: [ 36-26, 49-47, 31-37, 26-20 ]
Points won directly behind the serve:
29 % Rafter – 46 of 155
21 % Agassi – 25 of 117

Admittedly 1997 may be considered as the weakest year in Agassi’s [63] career, but Rafter’s [14] win in that 4th round encounter shouldn’t be underestimated. Agassi had been poorly playing in the first half of the season, but just before the US Open he rediscovered his passion for sport reaching the quarterfinal in Indianapolis, and in his first three rounds of the US Open he’d played very good tennis as well as against Rafter, who at the time was simply in the form of his life. The match could have been different if Agassi had converted a double set point at 6:5* in the 2nd set (earlier he saved a set point at 4:5) – Rafter first won a complex rally at the net, then fired an ace down the T. The 24-year-old Australian led 4:3* in the ensuing tie-break when he played his first forehand winner of the night! There was 4:1* (30/0) for Rafter in the 3rd set when Agassi – being supported by the partisan crowd – managed to win five straight games. Rafter kept his composure though, and made a deciding break at 4:3 in the 4th set (he’d done the same in the opener) to finish the 2-hour 52-minute contest at 1 a.m. with a backhand volley.

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