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2004 Nov 01 - Henman makes Masters Cup

Tim Henman has qualified for the end-of-season Masters Cup in Houston (USA) by default as both of his closest ATP Champions Race rivals - Andre Agassi and David Nalbandian - have withdrawn from the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris (France).

The great news is that Tim will not be under any pressure to perform in Paris as he proceeds to defend the title he won so gloriously in 2003.

Tim told his personal website:

"Confirming my place in Houston has been a goal of mine all year so it's very satisfying to qualify.

"It's the result of a lot of hard work over what has been a great year for me."

The field in Paris will be weaker than last year due to a number of high profile withdrawals. Roger Federer, Guillermo Coria, Juan Carlos Ferrero and Carlos Moya can also be added to the list along with Andre Agassi and David Nalbandian.

The French have naturally over-reacted to the situation. They responded:

"The organisers of the Paris Masters deplore these withdrawals which have added to the long list of players absent both from Paris and the Madrid Masters two weeks ago.

"Whatever the reasons, these withdrawals from the elite ATP tournaments bring discredit to the circuit."

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