Just three hours after winning his semifinal yesterday, Ivan Lendl played a 3 1/2-hour final against Mats Wilander in the $325,000 Monte Carlo Open tennis tournament on the shores of the Mediterranean.
Lendl's 6-1, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 victory on the red clay center court was worth $58,000. Despite fatigue, jet lag and the fact he hasn't played on clay since October, he defused Wilander's usually steady base line game.
"I'm not surprised he played so well today," Wilander said. "What's surprising is that he got through the week. It was a great performance."
Rain had delayed Lendl's Saturday semifinal against Henrik Sundstrom so long that it got too dark to play. The two resumed play yesterday morning at 4-4 in the third set. Lendl pulled it out, 4-6, 7-6, 7-6 . . .
In the Volvo Tennis-Chicago tournament, Jimmy Connors tore a muscle in his lower back and defaulted the final to John McEnroe. It was Connors' first default in pro tennis.
"Maybe that's it," he said. "I played too many times hurt in the past and it's finally caught up with me."
Minutes later, he shoved Chicago Sun-Times photographer Tom Cruze, that newspaper reported. "I didn't do anything because I was afraid I would hurt his back," Cruze said. The Sun-Times was one of the tournament sponsors.
Johan Kriek and Yannick Noah won the doubles, 3-6, 4-6, 7-5, 6-1, 6-4 . . .
In Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., Chris Evert Lloyd and Hana Mandlikova replayed the last point in the $100,000 final of the Ford Challenge Cup. At first match point, the linesman called Evert's return to the base line long. After both players protested, the umpire ruled a let. When they replayed the point, Mandlikova missed a backhand volley and Evert won, 6-3, 6-3.
"It was good sportsmanship by Hana," Evert said. "Other players might have accepted the call."
One man who didn't attend the match was a 38-year-old Palm Beach Gardens man who says he's been in love with Evert for 14 years. A Circuit Court judge, fearing a "John Hinckley-Jodie Foster situation," ordered him to stay away from Evert unless he wanted to go to jail.
The man said he had written 200 to 300 letters to Evert but that she had never responded. After he showed up at tournament headquarters, the Women's Tennis Association and the promoter got a 10-day restraining order against him.
"I'm not dangerous," the man said. "I wouldn't say I'm obsessed with her. I think single-minded would be a better word. I hate to be simplistic about it, but I just like her looks."