Re: pete Sampras Biography, First Grand Slam.
Pete Sampras - Dominates Wimbledon
In 1992 Sampras began working with a new coach, Tom Gullikson, a former top-ten player. Gullikson insisted that Sampras spend more time on clay courts, where the ball has a slower kick off the clay than hard courts, making Sampras depend less on his serve and more on winning points on good strokes and strategy. During the year he reached the quarterfinals of the Australian Open. He made it as far as the semifinals at Wimbledon before being ousted by Goran Ivanesevic, another hard-serving powerhouse. At the U.S. Open Sampras overcame Courier in the semifinals, but a stomach ailment left him drained and a step slow, and he lost to Stephan Edberg in the finals in four sets, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6, 6-2. Although he failed to win a Grand Slam during the year, Sampras rounded out 1992 with five titles, 70 match wins, and over $1.5 million in earnings.
After the 1992 U.S. Open, Sampras won 19 consecutive matches over the next six months. Reaching the semifinals of the Australian Open in January 1993, in April Sampras overtook Courier in point standing and claimed the No. 1 ranking. At the French Open, Sampras was stopped in the quarterfinals, but for the first time he walked into Wimbledon as the number one seed. In a spectacular performance, Sampras overcame defending champion Agassi in the quarterfinals and three-time winner Boris Becker in the semifinals. He met Courier, ranked No. 2, in the finals. After four grueling sets and 22 aces, Sampras prevailed to win his first Wimbledon championship. Overcoming a post-Wimbledon slump, Sampras won his second U.S. Open, easily overtaking fifteenth-seeded Cedric Pioline in the finals.
Following his Wimbledon victory, Sampras was slammed in the London press for his subdued, unemotional presence on the court. Headlines read "Wimble-Yawn" and "Samprazzzzz." Ironically, over the course of his career Sampras's lack of controversy in his life and play became his biggest source of controversy. Following in the wake of such on-court performers as Jimmy Connors and McEnroe, who were known for their emotional and passionate play, Sampras's expressionless silence during his matches was bemoaned as too impassionate, too seemingly indifferent. For years Sampras struggled to understand the distain for his demeanor. He was humble, polite, professional, and provided no dis-tasteful distractions on or off the court. He was raised, and trained, to focus on winning alone.
Sampras earned his third straight Grand Slam title, winning his first Australian Open championship in 1994. Then, for the third year in a row, he was ousted in the quarterfinals of the French Open, the only Grand Slam that he failed to dominate. Returning to Wimbledon, Sampras defended his championship, defeating Ivanisevic, 7-6, 7-6, 6-0, to take his second title on the grass courts. Coming off an ankle injury that sidelined him for six weeks, Sampras failed to play well at the U.S. Open, falling in the fourth round, but remained ranked No. 1.