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A friendly battle shapes up in quarters

Lindsay Davenport and Mary Joe Fernandez are the best of friends. Monday, each will be out to stop the other from reaching the quarterfinals.

"It's going to be weird," Davenport said after a victory over Christina Singer Saturday.

"She's been like a sister to me for over a year. I always stay with her and her family and they're like my parents."

Because the two are such close friends, they spend a lot of time practicing together and know each other's shots.

"It probably will be difficult because we spent two weeks in Miami practicing before we came here," Davenport said. "We flew over here together and we practiced the first four days."

So how will the two rivals, who have split their two previous tour matches, spend their time before they meet Monday?

"We're going to try and see a show tonight and not do anything different or try to be like enemies or something," Davenport said.

Shriver sees trouble on horizon for Graf

Pam Shriver has had so much trouble with her shoulder she's become something of an expert on injuries. So, it could be bad news for Steffi Graf when Shriver says the German's back injury could finish her career.

"I believe her back will be bad for the rest of her career," said Shriver, who turned 33 Tuesday and is making her 16th appearance at Wimbledon.

"She must try to keep it contained and keep it from getting worse. But that's easier said than done and I'm sure it is on her mind all the time.

"I would not be surprised if at any time she said "Hey, I have battled through this pain as long as I can and it's time to let it go,'

" said Shriver, who needed surgery in 1990 to repair a loose and unstable shoulder.

Graf, a five-time Wimbledon champion, has defied her back trouble to make it to the fourth round.

Big-hitting Sampras has link with Daly

Tampa's Pete Sampras admits he hits the ball like John Daly. The golf ball, that is.

The defending Wimbledon champion says he's an enthusiastic golfer when he's away from the tennis court. Renowned for his big serves, he admits some of it rubs off on the golf course.

"I like to give the ball a real belt like Daly," he said. "I swing all out and I guess I can hit it 300 yards at times.

"Mind you, Daly has a lot more control than me. My long drives often finish in the trees."

Daly probably wouldn't agree, but Sampras believes that golf isn't as tough as tennis.

"Golf should be easy," he said. "After all, the ball never moves and you try to produce the same swing all the time."

Want a new image? Why not try Andre's?

Emulating the Andre Agassi pirate look is easier these days.

That's because Agassi's sponsor, Nike, has put out a promotional kit called the "AKA _ The official Also Known As Agassi look-alike kit."

The kit provides Agassi clones with one black swoosh bandana, a paste-on goatee and sideburns and two hoop earrings.

"Everybody loves Andre and would like to experience what it's like to be Andre," said Jason Cohn, the Nike marketing person who developed the gimmicky idea. "It's a lot of fun. We're just giving it out here at Wimbledon as a promotional item."

_ TIMES WIRES

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