Andrei Chesnokov outlasted the rain and Christo van Rensburg, 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, yesterday in the WCT Tournament of Champions.
The second-round match of the exhibition event that serves as a U.S. Open warm-up began Thursday before rain washed out play at the West Side Tennis Club in New York, with Chesnokov leading, 6-2, 2-1.
Yesterday, Chesnokov and van Rensburg alternated streaks between showers that eventually sent the final second-round match to an indoor court 26 miles away. Aaron Krickstein outlasted Petr Korda, 4-6, 6-3, 6-1.
In the only quarterfinal completed, Emilio Sanchez beat Patrick McEnroe, 6-3, 6-1.
Henri Leconte wasted three match points against collegian Todd Martin of Lansing, Mich., before play was suspended for the night.
Leconte won the first set, 6-0, and led the second-set tiebreaker by 6-3 before Martin, a student at Northwestern University, won three straight points. The final one came on Leconte's serve when he appeared to have wrapped up the victory with a shot into the open court. Martin, trapped inside his service line, started to his right and slipped. But Leconte's shot hit the net, giving Martin time to reach the ball and hit a passing shot down the line. Martin complained about the slippery court and time was called.
Chesnokov and van Rensburg played just nine points in the morning before the court became too slippery to continue. Two hours later, they returned for 15 minutes more with Chesnokov leading by 4-2 when the rain resumed.
More than two hours later, van Rensburg swept four games to win the second set. But Chesnokov ripped through the first four games of the final set.
Hamlet Challenge: John McEnroe overcame six hours of rain delays to top third-seeded Brad Gilbert, 6-3, 6-2, in the quarterfinals in Commack, N.Y.
In another quarterfinal, eighth-seeded Guy Forget eliminated second-seeded Andres Gomez, 6-7 (4-7), 6-0, 7-5. The second set lasted only 21 minutes.
Sixth-seeded McEnroe, 13-1 in his career against Gilbert, dominated the match after their third try at beating the rain. After a delay of almost two hours at the start, they played four points before another two-hour break. Rain halted play for two more hours with Gilbert up, 3-2, and the score deuce in the sixth game.
Gilbert came back with an ace to be one point from a 4-2 lead. But McEnroe won 15 of the next 19 points to win the set, and then the next eight games.