November 5, 2002
Johansson Takes Alternate Spot
Australian Open champion Thomas Johansson will serve as the alternate for Tennis Masters Cup Shanghai after fellow Grand Slam champion Pete Sampras announced that he would not be making the journey to China.
This year, the 27-year-old Swede finished in the Top 20 and as his country's No. 1 player for the third time in his career.
In January at the Australian Open, Johansson became the first Swede to win a Grand Slam singles crown since Stefan Edberg captured the US Open in 1992. He posted wins over countryman Bjorkman in QF, Novak in a five-set SF and Safin in four sets in the final. He came into the tournament No. 18 and cracked the Top 10 afterwards at No. 10.
He did not reach a final the rest of the season and returned a 20-21 match record. His best results were a SF showing in Dubai (d. Henman, l. to El Aynaoui), and the QFs at TMS Monte Carlo (l. to Henman) and Halle (d. Ljubicic, l. to Carlsen).
He withdrew from the US Open due to a right shoulder injury and missed seven weeks before returning in October. He played the final five weeks of the regular season and compiled a 3-5 record, reaching the third round at Tennis Masters Series Madrid (l. to Calleri) and the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris (l. to Agassi).