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  Thursday, 25 January, 2001, 04:21 GMT
Capriati brushes Davenport aside
Jennifer Capriati
Capriati battles the heat on Centre Court
J Capriati beat L Davenport 6-3, 6-4

Jennifer Capriati reached her first Grand Slam final with a shock straight-sets defeat of reigning champion Lindsay Davenport.

Despite a nervous last few games, Capriati held on to take the semi 6-3 6-4 as Davenport self-destructed in the heat of the Melbourne afternoon.

Capriati broke Davenport in the first game of the match and did not look back from that point on.

Now 24, and back to the peak of her powers after that three-year break from the sport from 1993 to 1996, Capriati made the big shots when the pressure was on.

Davenport, in contrast, made unforced error after unforced error and her body language by the final game said it all - head bowed, shoulders slumped.


I was really determined before the match and I just gave it everything I've got
Jennifer Capriati

She was broken by Capriati in the fifth game of the second set and never looked like fighting back despite a few anxious moments for the eventual winner in her penultimate service game.

Battling on-court temperatures in the mid-40s C, Florida-based Capriati handled the conditions better and held her serve to seal the match in 76 minutes.

"I really wanted it... it has taken me a long time to get to the final of a grand slam," said Capriati.

"I was really determined before the match and I just gave it everything I've got."


I'm disappointed because in all the semi-finals I've ever played this is the most disappointing I've ever showed up to play
Lindsay Davenport

"She played great, she was really fired up but I thought I was not playing that well," said Davenport, who committed an unusually high 43 unforced errors.

"I'm disappointed because in all the semi-finals I've ever played this is the most disappointing I've ever showed up to play."

Capriati broke second seed Davenport in the second game of the first set and quickly built a 3-0 lead.

A sluggish Davenport won only one point in the opening two games and appeared to have few answers to her US compatriot's heavy groundstrokes.

Tenacious Capriati

Capriati then broke Davenport again in the opening game of the second set before surrendering her serve for the first and only time in the next game.

Davenport set up another service break opportunity for the tenacious Capriati with a double fault and a forehand error in the fifth game of the second set.

Capriati took the break when an an attempted Davenport passing shot bounced up off the net post, offering Capriati an open court to put the ball away.

Capriati then safely served out the match against a tiring Davenport.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Jennifer Capriati
"It takes so much to get to this point"
Jennifer's father and coach Stefano Capriati
"She's wiser now"
Lindsay Davenport
"I've never felt like today"
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25 Jan 01 | Australian Open
25 Jan 01 | Australian Open
23 Jan 01 | Australian Open
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