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Last Updated: Thursday, 15 January, 2004, 12:37 GMT
26 Albert Costa
Albert Costa
Born: 25/6/75
Nationality: Spanish
Seeded: 26
World ranking: 26
Australian Open best:
Quarter-final (1997)
Recent record:
2003: 3rd round
2002: 4th round
2001: N/A
Costa has struggled to rediscover the form he displayed when winning the French Open in 2002 but remains a class player who can trouble anyone.

His victory at Roland Garros was a surprise but Costa has always had the game, relishing lengthy baseline rallies with his rock-solid groundstrokes.

It remains doubtful, however, that he can find success away from the clay on which he has won all 12 of his career titles.

Costa relishes playing from the back of the court, exchanging baseline rallies, rather than the more attacking game required on hardcourts.

However, in 1997 Costa reached three semi-finals on hard courts, as well as the quarter-finals of the Australian Open, twice losing to Pete Sampras.

And as recently as March he reached the semi-finals at the Miami Masters, losing to Andre Agassi.

But he was not exactly in sparkling form for most of last year, aside from Miami and an epic run to the semi-finals at Roland Garros.

After the French Open, the 28-year-old did not win more than two matches in a row for the rest of the season.

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