BARCELONA, Spain -- Germany's Boris Becker will take center stage against Christian Rudd of Norway Tuesday to christen the new Olympic tennis facility at Valle d'Hebron.
Becker will be one of several seeded players, including top seeds Steffi Graf of Germany and American Jim Courier, highlighting 32 first round, opening-day matches on the eight clay courts.
'The courts are very slow, so I must work very hard for each point,' said the fifth-seed, who was unable to practice because he missed the team bus.
Graf, fresh off a Wimbledon title this month, was due to face Helen Kelesi of Canada. However, Kelesi pulled out with lung problems and was replaced by Lupita Novello of Mexico.
Courier, 21, who captured two legs of the Grand Slam but was surprised at Wimbledon, will follow Graf and tuneup his skills with a Court 1 contest against veteran Ramesh Krishnan of India, against whom he holds a 1-0 edge.
'I'm very familiar with his game, so there won't be any surprises,' said the world's top player from Florida.
Another Floridian, Mary Joe Fernandez of the United States, will take her first look at China's Li Chen, ranked No. 215 in the World.
'I have no idea how she plays, said Fernandez, who is fully recovered from a strained muscle. 'It looks like it should be an easy match, but I'll take nothing for granted. You never know.'
Wimbledon runnerup Goran Ivanisevic of Croatia, the No. 4 seed, meets Bernardo Mota of Portugal while on the women's side No. 6 Manuela Maleeva- Fragnierie of Switzerland opposes Andrea Vieira of Brazil.
Emilio Sanchez of Spain will also see action when the hometown favorite tangles with Todd Woodbridge of Australia.
The Spaniards no doubt will get the loudest cheers during the two- week tournament and there are six of the country's best entered.
Besides Sanchez, Sergi Bruguera, Jordi Arrese and Sergio Casal will compete for the men. Second-seeded Arantxa Sanchez Vicario and No. 5 Conchita Martinez will hold down the women's side.