The shoe was on the other foot and Chris Evert slipped it on gracefully.

"When I was 15, I beat Margaret Court when she was number one in the world," Evert said Sunday in Houston. "Now the shoe's on the other foot. When you lose to someone who's not a good player, then you should be distressed. But she's good.""She" is Monica Seles, a 15-year-old who overcame the nervousness of playing in her first pro final to upset Evert 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 in the $250,000 Virginia Slims of Houston tennis tournament.

In her fifth tournament as a pro, Seles propelled herself into the role of a Top 10 contender, although she started the week without a world ranking. Her victory, however, will boost her into the Top 20s when new world rankings come out in two weeks.

"I've played Tracy (Austin), Andrea (Jaeger) and Steffi (Graf) at 15 and Monica is very similar to them," Evert said. "I don't see why she shouldn't be projected to the Top 10 or Top five."

Seles went into the finals Sunday thinking she didn't have more than a five-percent chance to win. She still had the same feeling when Evert won the first set.

And there was doubt even in the third set when Seles had taken a 5-2 lead.

"I remember against (Susan) Sloane (in the semifinals) Chris was down 5-2 and suddenly it was 5-5," Seles said. "I was lucky it didn't happen to me."

Seles earned her biggest payday - $50,000 - and Evert took home $22,500 as the runner-up.

Evert was not surprised to see Seles' emergence.

"If you look at her record, she should have been in the finals here," Evert said. "She's been to two semifinals already and had to withdraw because of injuries. She's young, but everybody knows she can play."

Evert had her confidence shaken when she was broken after just having won the first set.

"The second game of the second set was crucial to my confidence," Evert said. "I got kind of discouraged and had trouble the rest of the match."

Seles had reached the semifinals of Virginia Slims tournament at New Orleans and Washington but had to default both times because of injuries.

Now that she's beaten injuries and Evert, she is feeling less pressure.

In the doubles finals, second-seeded Katrina Adams and Zina Garrison beat top-seeded Lori McNeil and Gigi Fernandez 6-3, 6-4.


Andre Agassi, getting a boost to his confidence heading into the Tournament of Champions, coasted to a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Michael Chang Sunday in the finals of the AT&T Challenge exhibition tennis tournament in Atlanta.

It was Agassi's second victory of the week over Chang in the round robin event.

Agassi had 29 winners in the match, 14 off the forehand side.

"My goal was to run him from corner to corner and make him work so hard that eventually I hit a winner or he'd miss," Agassi said.

"What can you do if the guy is hitting winners?" Chang asked. "It can be real frustrating because you don't know what to do once you've gone to your last resort. I've got to hand it to Andre. He played really good today."

The Grand Champions doubles final that paired Tim Gullickson and Hank Pfister against Sherwood Stewart and Marty Riessen was called off because of rain.


In only the second final of his pro career, 19-year-old Alberto Mancini of Argentina upset Boris Becker to win the $607,500 Monte Carlo Open tennis tournament Sunday.

Mancini battled for more than four hours before stopping Becker and his new-found clay court game 7-5, 2-6, 7-6 (7-4), 7-5.

The victory was worth $122,900, the biggest paycheck of Mancini's career. Becker ended with $61,450.

Mancini also won his first final, last year in Bologna, Italy. Prior to Sunday, he had career earnings of less than $155,000.

Ranked 31st in the world now, Mancini upset top-seeded Mats Wilander in the semifinals and Becker, the No. 2 seed, in the final on successive days. Wilander and Becker are ranked two and three in the world.

"This year is beginning very good and giving me a lot of confidence for the rest of the year," Mancini said. "To beat Wilander and Becker on center court in Monte Carlo ... it's like a dream."