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Davenport hopes foot improves before Open

Associated Press

NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- Jennifer Capriati won her first singles title in 18 months, claiming the Pilot Pen title Saturday when Lindsay Davenport withdrew in the second set with an injury.

Top-seeded Davenport has been struggling with a painful nerve disorder in her left foot, and she was visibly limping as the match wore on.

Capriati was leading 6-2, 4-0 when Davenport walked to the net and ended the match. The players met at midcourt and hugged before walking off.

Davenport said she hopes to be ready for the U.S. Open, which begins Monday. She said she planned to see a doctor at the Open this weekend.

"There's not much you can do for it, maybe get an injection before the Open starts," said Davenport, seeded third at the Open. "Hopefully he can do something to at least get me through the next two weeks."

Davenport apologized to the crowd and received a lengthy standing ovation.

Third-seeded Capriati won for the first time since taking the Australian Open in 2002. She had been playing solidly at New Haven, beating Elena Bovina and Anna Pilstolesi in three sets.

Capriati advanced to the final when second-seeded Amelie Mauresmo retired with an upset stomach during Friday night's semifinal.

Capriati turned an ankle in the first set Saturday, but she shook it off and pounded away with a gritty ground game. Her powerful forehand was just too much for hobbled Davenport.

"It's one of my weapons," Capriati said. "When that's on, it kind of makes my whole game go."

The three-time Grand Slam winner said her success at New Haven has given her plenty of momentum heading into the Open, where she is seeded sixth.

"I couldn't have planned it any better than this, it's exactly what I was hoping for to come in to this week, and I got it," Capriati said.
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