Sampras is forced to struggle


TOP seed Pete Sampras and defending champion Michael Chang struggled at times before reaching the second round of the Hong Kong.

Open yesterday Sampras, looking for the title to improve his chances of replacing Austria's Thomas Muster as world number one, lost the second set before beating Sebastien Lareau of Canada 6-1, 3-6, 6-1. Chang had a battle on his hands before he defeated Marcos Ondiuska of South Africa 7-6, 7-5 6-1.

Sampras, who was installed as, world number one for the first time at the 1993 Hong Kong Open, won the first set easily enough against world number 127 Lareau but lost concentration and three straight games at the end of the second.

The world number two increased the tempo in the deciding set and a stream of outright winners clinched his match.