Spring Fever Auction
Pete Sampras debuted on the professional tour in 1988 and finished his career at the 2002 US Open, which he won, defeating rival Andre Agassi in the final. He was particularly esteemed for his precise serve, earning the nickname "Pistol Pete".
Sampras became the first professional to break Roy Emerson's pre-Open Era record of 12 Grand Slam singles titles and retired with 14 titles (seven Wimbledon, five US Open, two Australian Open), a record since overtaken by Roger Federer and equaled by Rafael Nadal. He also won seven elite indoor titles (five ATP World Tour Finals and two Grand Slam Cups) and still holds the ATP record of six year-end No. 1 rankings, achieved consecutively from 1993 through 1998.
Sampras' numerous accolades include a record six ATP Player of the Year awards and six ITF World Champion awards, a record as well. Together with Ken Rosewall, they are the only men to have won Grand Slam singles titles as a teenager, in their 20s, and in their 30s. In 2005, TENNIS Magazine named Sampras the greatest tennis player for the period 1965 through 2005, from its list "The 40 Greatest Players of the TENNIS Era".
At 19 years and 28 days, Sampras became the youngest man ever to win the US Open.
Sampras defeated two tennis greats in the quarterfinals and semi-finals to reach the finals. In the quarters, he beat out third-ranked Ivan Lendl in five sets to break Lendl’s streak of eight consecutive U.S. Open finals appearances. Up next was John McEnroe, who Sampras beat quite easily in four sets, setting up a final match against fourth-ranked Andre Agassi. This was a dream matchup, as both Sampras and Agassi were young, up-and-coming superstars in the world of tennis.
The finals turned out to be anti-climactic, as Sampras thoroughly dominated Agassi, winning in straight sets, 6-4, 6-3, 6-2. The win gave Pete his first career Grand Slam title and he would go on to win 13 more for the all-time record of 14 career Grand Slam titles. However, in 2009 he was surpassed by Roger Federer who currently owns 17 career Grand Slam titles.
Featured in this lot is a tennis racquet used by Sampras during his first US Open and Grand Slam victory in 1990. It was originally purchased at a silent auction charity fundraiser held at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, NY around 1990-1991 shortly after Sampras defeated Agassi in the US open to win his first ever Tennis Grand Slam .
This black racket is a Wilson Pro Staff. It is made of super lightweight graphite kevlar material. It shows tremendous use, and is also autographed by Sampras on the handle.
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This lot has a Reserve Price that has not been met.