WIMBLEDON, England -- Tommy Haas has been in a Wimbledon draw with Pete Sampras. This year he's in the Wimbledon draw -- and into the fourth round -- with Novak Djokovic, his next opponent after both won Saturday.
"I'm not really a fan this week," Haas said, "but obviously I know what's going on."
Meaning, the upsets which dispatched Rafael Nadal in the first round and Roger Federer in the second round give Haas -- at 35 the oldest man still playing -- hope against top-seeded Djokovic.
It's been four years since Haas, a 4-6, 6-2, 7-5, 6-4 winner Saturday over Feliciano Lopez, made to the second week. It's been 16 years since Haas played the tournament for the first time as a 19-year-old in 1997, the year Sampras won the fourth of his seven championships.
Haas has dual German-United States citizenship, so America has at least a naturalized representative in the competition, even if all the native-born U.S. males were out by the second round.
Born in Hamburg, Haas came to Nick Bollettieri's tennis school as an 11-year-old in 1989. He's lived in Florida ever since and three years ago took the oath to be an American, though he did not want to forsake his legacy.
"I considered it for a second," said Haas when asked why he didn't switch and play for the U.S. "If you had a German / American flag, I would represent that flag but it doesn't exist. In the long run, I played for Germany for too long."
In 2002 Haas made it to No. 2 in the world rankings, but then one of his numerous injuries got in the way. He keeps going, familiar in his baseball-type cap with the bill turned the wrong way.
"Yes, I'm 35," he said. "There's nothing I can do about it. I'm late in my career. These are all things that don't matter when you get out there."
Notes & quotes: Medal winners from the British team who played in last year's London Olympics, including gold medalist Andy Murray, had seats in the Royal Box. He wore the obligatory coat and tie then stepped out to practice for his match Monday against Tommy Robredo. The Olympic tennis was held on the Wimbledon grass courts where a month earlier Murray lost in the Wimbledon finals to Roger Federer.
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