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tennisIlove09
Apr 20th, 2003, 10:03 PM
Beyond expectations
Davenport rolls into final
By Michael DiRocco
April 20 2003
The Florida Times Union

AMELIA ISLAND -- Lindsay Davenport held the No. 1 ranking for 38 weeks, has won three Grand Slam singles titles, and is ranked No. 5, so making the final of the Bausch & Lomb Championships isn't really that surprising.

Except to Davenport.

Lindsay Davenport says a win on clay against Capriati was big.
Elena Dementieva says she was not nervous, but needed the win.
Justine Henin-Hardenne says she felt a bit tired in her loss.

The 1997 tournament champion yesterday admitted that she didn't really expect to play this well in just her second clay-court tournament in three years.

"I've surprised myself with how well I've done on the clay, and how well I've been playing," Davenport said after her 6-3, 5-7, 6-2 victory against No. 3 seed Jennifer Capriati on Stadium Court yesterday. "It was obviously a lot of hard work coming back from the knee surgery [in 2002] and coming back and doing well but not feeling like I was playing at the level I could play at.

"It's been a long time coming, but I do feel like I'm playing at a really high level right now."

It would be tough for her to play any better than she has this week at Amelia Island Plantation. She beat Nicole Pratt in 40 minutes, Marlene Weingartner in 43 minutes, and Patty Schnyder in 45 minutes to reach yesterday's semifinal. In those three matches, she committed a combined 38 unforced errors to her opponents' 53, hit 84 winners to her opponents' 30, and spent 128 minutes on the court.

Lindsay Davenport says a win on clay against Capriati was big.
Elena Dementieva says she was not nervous, but needed the win.
Justine Henin-Hardenne says she felt a bit tired in her loss.

Yesterday's match lasted almost as long as the first three -- 120 minutes, including a 47-minute second set. Davenport committed 46 unforced errors and seven double faults, but she was able to hold off Capriati by running the three-time Grand Slam winner from corner to corner.

"The match was kind of the same pace the whole time," Capriati said. "I would get her on the run sometimes, and be on the defensive some. But most of the time I felt like my back was against the wall and that she was dictating a lot of the points.

"She was just on, hitting a lot of lines. I've never seen her play this well before."

It's the best she has played since she returned from arthroscopic knee surgery last July.

"It's impossible to compare how you played two years ago or five years ago, but I'm really happy with where my game's at now," Davenport said. "I feel like on the court I'm very much in control of my emotions and really motivated right now. It's been really fun the last few weeks."

Capping her run this past week with a title today would place her alongside Martina Navratilova, Chris Evert, Steffi Graf, Gabriela Sabatini, Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario and Monica Seles as players who have won multiple titles at Amelia Island.

"I think I was a totally different player back then [1997]," Davenport said. "It'd be funny to see some clips of that compared to how I play now."

Kart
Apr 20th, 2003, 11:29 PM
Has Conchita Martinez not won multiple Amelia island titles ?