Wimbledon champion, Arthur Ashe, was defeated in the third round of the South African Open Tennis Championships in Johannesburg on Friday (21 November).
Wimbledon champion, Arthur Ashe, was defeated in the third round of the South African Open Tennis Championships in Johannesburg on Friday (21 November). The number one seed went down 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 to Pat Cramer of South Africa.
Ashe only occasionally showed flashes of his devastating serve-an-volley game. He had eye trouble when he arrived in Johannesburg, but this did not seem to affect the result.
Cramer, who scored the biggest win of his career, outplayed the American with a superb display of power tennis -- mainly from the baseline.
The segregated crowd saw Ashe -- runner-up in the championships to compatriot Jimmy Connors for the past two years -- fail to sustain a second set revival. He served badly and continually hit volleys in to the net in the first set to allow Cramer to take control.
In the second set, Ashes' serve improved but he was still not going particularly well and Cramer was able to re-establish command in the deciding set, breaking his opponent in the fourth and eighth games.
The third round proved a disaster for the top seeds. The other two, Adriano Panatta of Italy and American Eddie Dibbs both lost their matches in that round.