1999 IN REVIEW
Slipped from No. 22 at the start of the year to outside the Top 100 by May due to 0-6 start over the first three months, but consistent claycourt results helped him finish No. 61…Reached QF in Barcelona (lost to T. Martin) in April to post first wins of year, and gained SF in Munich (l. to Pavel) two weeks later…Advanced to 4th RD at Roland Garros (d. No. 7 Henman from 0-2 sets deficit, l. to Rios in five sets after leading 2-0)…However, then endured five-match Tour losing streak before advancing to Bucharest SF (l. to Alami) in Sept…Followed with 23rd career final (all on clay), losing to Di Pasquale in Palermo…Played Challengers final six weeks of season and was one of 11 Spaniards in the year-end Top 100 though he did finish out of Top 50 for first time since 1992…Went 20-15 on clay, 0-5 on hard.
1992-Qualified at Casablanca, advancing to SF...Qualified at French Open, Umag and Stuttgart...1993-Won first Tour title in Sao Paulo...1994-Seven titles in nine finals...Advanced to French Open final, losing to Bruguera...Made first Top 10 appearance...Qualified for ATP Tour World Championship...1995-Ranked in Top 10 20 weeks...1996-Won three ATP Tour titles in as many finals - Bologna (d. C. Costa), Kitzbnhel (d. Corretja) and Bucharest (d. Moya)...Reached first career hardcourt SF in Scottsdale (l. to Ferreira)...1997-Compiled a 32-15 claycourt record and won back-to-back titles in Palermo (d. Hrbaty) and Cairo Challenger (d. Alami)…1998-Won a title (Estoril) for sixth straight year and beat Rafter and Agassi en route to Australian Open QF.
Began playing tennis at age 7...Won 1997 Spanish National Championship (d. A Costa)...The European junior champion in 1991 and led Spain to Sunshine Cup and Galea Cup titles...Enjoys backgammon, dancing and skiing...Has 2-2 career Davis Cup record in three ties...Wife, Arantxa (married Dec. 11, 1999)…Coached by countryman and Tour pro Francisco Roig.