The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Organisers unsure of Sampras presence

Melbourne: Australian Open organisers are still unsure whether US Open champion Pete Sampras will compete at the tournament next month.

Sampras was automatically included in the official entries for the January 13-26 event when nominations closed on Wednesday but has yet to indicate whether he will play.

“Like everyone else we’re still waiting to see what Pete’s future in tennis is,” an Australian Open spokesman said. “Of course we’re hoping he’ll come, but at this stage we really don’t know.”

Sampras has not played since winning the US Open in September and has hinted he may retire. His wife Bridgette gave birth to their first child last month.

Under ATP rules, the top 100 ranked men were automatically entered into the tournament unless they had notified organisers they would not be playing. The only player to do that was American Todd Martin, who lost the 1994 Australian Open final to Sampras.

The women, unlike the men, have to nominate themselves for the tournament and organisers said 97 of the top 100 had signed up to play.

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