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Pete Sampras was the king of Centre Court throughout the 1990s, and looked to continue his championship streak into the new millennium as he faced 12th seeded Australian Patrick Rafter in the 2000 Men's Final at Wimbledon. Sampras had a fairly easy trip through the tournament, losing only three sets in his matches on route to the final. Rafter, the two-time U.S. Open champion, was also doing well, only losing one set in his first five matches throughout the fortnight. Then he faced Andre Agassi in the semi-finals in a five-set thriller, with the victory earning Rafter his first appearance in the Wimbledon final and his first match against Sampras on a grass court.
The day would start with rain delaying the match by an hour, giving Rafter a bit more of a rest after his match with Agassi. In the first set, which had two additional rain delays, Rafter showed that he was not awed by the occasion or the opponent as he won a tough first set that went to a tiebreak. Sampras evened things up, winning the second set, which also needed a tiebreak. It looked to be anybody's game, until Sampras went ahead 3-2, getting break point in the third set, and eventually winning the set. It would be tough for Rafter to come back, knowing that Sampras had never lost a five set match at Wimbledon.
But the day would belong to Pete Sampras, as he won the fourth set in the gathering darkness of Centre Court to win the match and re-write the record books. His win over Patrick Rafter, 6-7 (10-12), 7-6 (7-5), 6-4, 6-2 was his seventh Wimbledon title (and his fourth consecutive championship), and a record-breaking 13th Grand Slam title.