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Old 02-16-2006, 08:45 AM   #37
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Default Re: More News

Posted on Thu, Feb. 16, 2006
Agassi's moves explained
HE SOUGHT BACK EXAM BEFORE WITHDRAWING
By Darren Sabedra
Mercury News

News of Andre Agassi's withdrawal from the SAP Open this week was sent to the media late largely because the tennis legend's agent wanted his client to be seen by a doctor first, a spokeswoman for Agassi Enterprises said Wednesday.

Agassi practiced at HP Pavilion on Sunday from 6-7 p.m. and then told tournament director Bill Rapp of his lower-back injury and potential withdrawal, Julie Stipe said. Agassi asked to be seen by a doctor to confirm.

Rapp told Agassi that the tournament physician would not be back until Monday. Agassi's handlers then told Rapp that they would issue an official news release after the medical exam because the doctor's confirmation would prevent anyone from accusing Agassi of faking the injury. They also were under the impression that a withdrawal could not become official until a doctor's OK, Stipe said.

But that isn't the case.

The ATP made Agassi's withdrawal official around 9 p.m. Sunday.

Still, Rapp said he thought Agassi's handlers didn't want the news out until the doctor's visit Monday. Stipe said it no longer mattered once the ATP made it official.

Rapp ultimately decided to send out a release without approval from Agassi's people. It reached the media via e-mail at midnight, preventing the news from making the morning papers
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