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Kafelnikov Wins; Last Seed Left

June 12, 1998

HALLE, Germany (AP) _ Russia’s Yevgeny Kafelnikov, the defending champion, was the only seeded player left at the Gerry Weber Open Friday after beating Magnus Norman 7-6 (7-1), 6-2.

Kafelnikov, the second seed, reached the semifinals by defeating the eighth-seeded Swede in just over an hour as unusual cold continued to plague the $875,000 grass court event.

Richard Krajicek of the Netherlands, the third seed, struggled with his returns and lost to Sweden’s Magnus Larsson 6-4, 6-2.

Krajicek, the 1996 Wimbledon champion, became the latest victim after upsets had already claimed this year’s Australian Open champion, Petr Korda, and the winner of the French Open, Spain’s Carlos Moya.

Larsson took control of the match by whipping in a high percentage of first serves after gaining a break against Krajicek to take a 5-4 first-set lead.

Krajicek complained about the slippery center court. Despite the artificial roof, moisture from rain has caused players to slip and slide.

``It was very slippery,″ Krajicek said.

Kafelnikov, who also reached the final two years ago, faces Thomas Johansson in Saturday’s semifinals after the Swede ended the upset run of Germany’s Hendrik Dreekmann.

Johansson struggled to a 6-3, 1-6, 6-4 victory over Dreekmann, who had beaten Moya and Boris Becker. He plays Paul Haarhuis of the Netherlands, who beat Italy’s Gianluca Pozzi 6-3, 7-6 (7-4).

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