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Flashback: Agassi Defeats Sampras in 1995 AO Final
By Chris Oddo
Each day during the Australian Open we will take a trip in our tennis time machine to relive historical moments in the tournament's history. Today we will look at a classic final between Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras in 1995. (So far, we've revisited: 1.
John McEnroe's infamous AO banishment
; 2. the
Federer and Tipsarevic's classic '08 clash, and
Mary Pierce's triumph in 1995
Marat Safin outlasts Agassi in 2004
Nadal Outlasts Verdasco in 2009 epic
Schiavone Over Kuznetsova in 2011 Record Setter epic
Hingis' six-year Australian Open final streak
(January 25, 2013) --
had won four of the last six Grand Slam titles when he ran into
1995 final in Melbourne
. He had also won four of five matches against his longtime rival, but none of that would help him get past Agassi in this four-set, two-hour, thirty-six minute final.
Sampras's campaign in Australia will forever be known for his emotional outburst in his quarterfinal match with
, as Sampras, overwhelmed by sadness over news of his coach
's cancer diagnosis, was reduced to tears in the latter stages of his five-setter with his fellow American.
Sampras survived that challenge, but he may have spent a bit too much emotionally and physically in the lead-up to the final, as he had to fight through two five-setters and a four-setter before he faced the bandana- and goatee-clad Agassi in the final.
Despite 28 aces from the defending champ, a determined Agassi would save two set points in a third-set tiebreaker to take a two sets to one lead on Sampras, who missed a makeable volley at 6-5 in the tiebreaker before dropping the final two points. "I need to the big guy making the shots," Sampras would later say, "but Andre took control."
The victory over Sampras would mark Agassi's only over Sampras in a Grand Slam final, and it would also mark the beginning of a very successful career down under for Agassi, who would set an Open Era record (later tied by Roger Federer) of four Australian Open titles, including two over the age of 30 in 2001 and 2003.
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