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Sampras-Agassi pumps USA ratings

A fierce dual between Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras Wednesday night at the U.S. Open helped USA Network to a 4.1 rating in primetime with 3.4 million households in Nielsen overnight numbers.

It was the biggest audience for a tennis telecast in cable history, according to USA's head of research Ray Giacopelli. "We lucked in with the marquee match," Giacopelli said. "It would have been a great final."

USA's overall 2001 U.S. Open ratings to date are up 36% from last year. CBS will pick up coverage of the tournament's final two rounds this weekend.
- Allison Romano