Safin, Nalbandian Top Euro Series Heading Into Final Week

Posted on November 1, 2004

Though both failed to win titles last week at St. Petersburg and Basel respectively, their late-round efforts have put Marat Safin and David Nalbandian in a tie for first place in the inaugural Tennis-X Euro Series Standings with one week of regular-season play remaining.

With no one player dominating during the European indoor season and 100 points to the winner at this week's Masters Series-Paris, roughly 20 players have outside shots at unseeded Safin and Nalbandian to take home the Euro Series prize-money bonanza.

"This is just how we pictured the exciting finish to the Euro Series -- complete anarchy," said Tennis-X CEO Luke Johnson. "We'll be watching Paris closely to see who grabs their throat during the last week of play, which is normally a choke-fest between Masters Cup qualification and now the even-more-important Euro Series finish."

Within closest striking distance to Safin and Nalbandian are last week's St. Petersburg winner Mikhail Youzhny, 33 points behind, and Stockholm runner-up Andre Agassi, 44 points behind in fourth place.

Among the Top 10 on the Euro Series Standings but eliminated from a top-three finish are No. 7 Joachim "Pim-Pim" Johansson, who withdrew from the MS-Paris with illness, and No. 8 "Grinning" Greg Rusedski, whose ranking was not high enough for direct entry into the MS-Paris draw.

The Euro Series will be completed and the lucrative checks distributed after the MS-Paris, with the top finisher receiving $25.00 (USD), and a share of the fan-supported Euro Series Prize Fund, which as of Sunday stood at an impressive $28.00 (USD).

The 2004 Tennis-X Euro Series is a historic achievement in men's tennis that links the nine men's European indoor tournaments after the US Open leading to the year-ending Masters Cup, creating a cohesive, five-week European indoor season.

NEWS FLASH: Marat Safin and David Nalbandian have withdrawn from the MS-Paris as of Monday morning with injury.

"With the Monday withdrawal of Nalbandian from the MS-Paris, now the Euro Series title looks to be the cranky Russian Safin's for the taking," said Johnson in a live Monday morning press conference from his office hot tub at the Tennis-X headquarters. "He's a good kid. Now he can keep the Safinettes living the lifestyle they're accustomed to. He was dead in the water a couple months back, now he's on top of the world...This press conference is over, get out."

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