from La Stampa Sera
translated into English by Mauro Cappiello
The Junior World Champion, won the Cuore Cup. Defeated countryman Wilander in two easy sets "My goal is to qualify for the year-end Masters"
MILAN - Betrayed by McEnroe and Connors, unjustified absent, with Kriek who didn't honor his "wild card", the Cuore Cup of Milan, now at its seventh edition, records the birth of a star in the tennis world: Stefan Edberg, the eighteen-year-old junior world champion, won the all Swedish final against Mats Wilander and enrolled his name in the golden book of the event after the high-sounding ones of countryman Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe, Gulllermo Vilas and Ivan Lendl.
It was a one-sided victory obtained in only 74', thanks to a terrific backhand groundstroke and, especially, a great serve.
Wilander said after the final: "Edberg's first and second serve are more or less equal in accuracy and power, because his slice and variations always put you in trouble. For this reason, I'm not discouraged by the defeat even though I had previously won the five head-to-heads played in the past in junior competitions. Actually, I was convinced I could win: I did not believe that he might really serve this well throughout the entire match. I have not played at my best and I made the tactical mistake of not insisting on his forehand side, his weaker shot, but when one serves so well you can only think of how to return.»
«When I made my appearance on the professional tour - recalls Wilander - Borg said that I would be one of the best because I was playing with my head. Edberg, however, with the serve he has, can even play without thinking. And if he plays like he did against me in the final, there are really few players who can beat him nowadays.»
So, after McEnroe, another player who plays a show tennis has dawned on the world stage, one who doesn't only care to defend and not make mistakes, who doesn't base his own game on regularity and rhythm. Edberg has traditional shots without rotation, suitable for a spectacular attack tennis, he only needs to give his forehand a greater regularity and precision, maybe changing his grip.
And the stats of the final clearly indicate the different mentality of play by the two protagonists: Edberg did 26 errors against 16 by Wilander, but at the same time he scored as many as 31 winning shots against 12 by his rival.
Constantly tidying his hair that fell over his eyes, Edberg tried to hide his great satisfaction in the press conference. When asked if he knew what he had pocketed with his success, he promptly replied: «Sixty-eight thousand dollars,» and laughed heartily.
Then he said: «I am also surprised to have been able to win such an important tournament. I knew I constantly improved over the past two months, but I didn't expect to be able to maintain such a consistency of performance until the final. The key to the match against Wilander is to be found in my excellent performance on the backhand groundstrokes and especially on my serve. With my coach Percy Rosberg I had long spoken of the match to be played in the final and he had advised me to continuously vary the pace of the shots, changing with each stroke, alternating heavy balls to light, long to short. We often practice together with Wilander and we realized that he prefers regularity to give his best.»
In the doubles final the Czech duo Slozil-Smid won against favourite Curren-Denton in two disappointing sets.
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