Page last updated at 14:49 GMT, Saturday, 31 October 2009

Agassi wig collapsed before final

Andre Agassi
First wife Brooke Shields persuaded Agassi to shave his head

Former tennis star Andre Agassi wore a wig held together with pins in his first Grand Slam final, excerpts from his autobiography have revealed.

The hairpiece - in his famous mullet style - had fallen apart the night before the 1990 French Open final, which Agassi lost to Andres Gomez.

Before the match he prayed "not for victory, but that my hairpiece would not fall off", he writes in Open.

Earlier excerpts revealed his use of drug crystal methamphetamine in 1997.

The 39-year-old, who retired in 2006, admits that - in order to escape a ban - he lied to tennis authorities that his drink had been spiked with the highly addictive drug.

Clamped together

Further excerpts describe his distress at the hair loss which led to him wearing a hairpiece.

"Every morning I would get up and find another piece of my identity on the pillow, in the wash basin, down the plughole," he writes.

But after the wig fell apart in the shower the night before the Paris final, his brother helped him clamp it together using about 20 clips.

Agassi writes: "Of course I could have played without my hairpiece, but what would all the journalists have written if they knew that all the time I was really wearing a wig?

"During the warming-up training before play I prayed. Not for victory, but that my hairpiece would not fall off.

"With each leap, I imagine it falling into the sand. I imagine millions of spectators move closer to their TV sets, their eyes widening and, in dozens of dialects and languages, ask how Andre Agassi's hair has fallen from his head."

Agassi went on to win eight Grand Slams during his career and is one of only six men to win all four major titles.

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