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Capriati boosts Pilot Pen field


Jennifer Capriati is coming back to the Pilot Pen Tennis tournament.

Capriati’s riches to rags and back to riches story has captivated tennis fans since she reached the French Open semifinals as a 14-year-old and became the youngest player to break into the top 10.

Two years ago, as Capriati was closing in on the No. 1 ranking, she delighted fans at the Pilot Pen en route to a trip to the semifinals.

On Monday, Pilot Pen Tournament Director Anne Worcester received word that the three-time Grand Slam champion will be returning to the WTA’s tour stop in New Haven, which begins Friday at the Connecticut Tennis Center.

Capriati’s right shoulder is still not 100 percent. She plans on using the Pilot Pen tournament to not only prepare for the U.S. Open, but also test her shoulder.

While the possibility exists that she could withdraw from the Pilot Pen before the main draw begins on Monday, her camp believes the rest she got by withdrawing from the Acura, in her opening match at San Diego, and then skipping events in Los Angeles and Toronto, should put her in position to contend for both the Pilot Pen and U.S. Open titles.

"I would honestly say that there are probably six to eight marquee names in the women’s game today, and among them, Venus (Williams), Serena (Williams) and Jennifer share superstar status," Worcester said.

"The Capriati name transcends sports. She is a symbol of hope for anybody who has overcome adversity in their life.

"Talk about making a comeback against all odds. She has accomplished so much and still really enjoys the game. She still might have a grand slam in her."

Capriati, ranked 7th in the world, was off the tour for 15 months in 1995 and 1996 because of off-the-court problems.

Because she missed the entry deadline, Capriati is at the top of the "next-in" list. If a player withdraws from the main draw — and Worcester said Alexandra Stevenson and Meghann Shaughnessy are the most likely candidates to bow out — Capriati would be in. She could also be given a "wild card" if necessary.

Worcester said former No. 1 player Monica Seles, who has been sidelined for most of the summer with an injured foot, "is not a possibility; she is not ready to play next week."

And No. 9 Chanda Rubin is also unlikely to enter the Pilot Pen because of an injured shoulder.

Worcester said that nothing has changed in the status of four-time defending champion Venus Williams, who has been out of action because of an abdominal strain. Worcester said on Friday that it was unlikely that Williams will recover in time to play in the Pilot Pen.
 

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From what I read here she did not enter. So that is not so alarming.
Anyway: Get healthy soon, Monica! We miss you!
 

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:sad: damn again
please play at US Moni :kiss:
 
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Doesn't sound that great though - her shoulder is not 100% and she is using the event to see if she is fit for the US Open?!
 

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:( I hope Monica gets well soon.
 
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