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US Tennis Player Paul Goldstein Strives to Win ATP Tournament

American Paul Goldstein is a fixture at the Legg-Mason tennis tournament, being played in Washington this week. He has played in this event for the last 11 years, but as VOA's Steve Schy reports from the Fitzgerald Tennis Center, he has never won an ATP Tour tournament.

Paul Goldstein is not one of the superstars of tennis. You will never hear his name mentioned in the same breath as world number one and two, Roger Federer of Switzerland and Rafael Nadal of Spain. He is not well known, like fellow-American Andy Roddick or legends Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi.

But, in the world of tennis, Paul Goldstein is known as a grinder. Despite losing his second-round match, falling to 15th-seeded Czech Radek Stepanek, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 Wednesday, he does not give-up.

"You know, someone once said I'm a tough out I'm a tough out," he said. "And I think that's right. I don't think I was blessed with as much gift or talent as some of the other guys out there. And so I'm not able to end points quickly and so I feel I have to really get the most out of what I'm able to do out on the court."

Goldstein turned pro in 1998. He has ranked as high as 58th in the world and is currently ranked at number 101. But he says he still has things he wants to accomplish.

"You know, I always wanted to make finals of an ATP event, which I've never done. Made four or five semifinals and always lost," he added. "And I always wanted to make a second week, which would be the fourth round of a Slam in singles, which I've never done. So from a results standpoint, from a performance standpoint, those I guess would be my goals."

Though Goldstein, who turns 31 on Saturday, says he still feels good on the court. But his priorities have changed. Goldstein got married in 2004 and is now the father of a seven-week-old baby girl. He says it is harder to be on the road and away from his family. But he is still hoping for that elusive ATP title.