DAVENPORT, Capriati, Williams Lead

Monday, November 5th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

MUNICH, Germany (AP) _ Lindsay Davenport, Jennifer Capriati and Venus Williams led a 1-2-3 American finish in the WTA's year-end rankings.

Davenport retained the No. 1 spot despite pulling out of the Sanex Championships final Sunday with a bruised knee before play began. Serena Williams was handed the title and ended the year with a No. 7 ranking.

Davenport is No. 1 for the year for the second time, although she failed to win a Grand Slam tournament. She overtook Capriati during the Sanex event.

In the closest finish to a year in more than a decade, Davenport had 4,902 ranking points, beating Capriati by just 11 points. Capriati held No. 1 for just three weeks.

``Maybe I lost my intensity after getting to No. 1,'' Capriati said. ``It's only natural.''

Martina Hingis, who had been No. 1 before being passed by Capriati, finished at No. 4. She was followed in the top 10 by Kim Clijsters, Justine Henin, Serena Williams, Jelena Dokic, Amelie Mauresmo and Monica Seles.

Capriati, who has made a great comeback from personal troubles, won the Australian Open and French Open this year. Venus Williams won the other two majors _ Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.

Hingis lost her top ranking when she injured her ankle at a tournament in Filderstadt, Germany. The Swiss star has not won a Grand Slam since the 1999 Australian Open.

Venus Williams hurt her rankings points by not playing in Europe after the Sept. 11 attacks. Sister Serena competed in Munich and promises even better things.

``I'm on a mission to be No. 1,'' she said. ``You're going to get tired of me because you're going to see me everywhere next year.''

Along with Hingis, the year's biggest loser was Anna Kournikova, who missed most of the year with a foot stress fracture.

The Russian completed another year without winning a tournament. Once ranked No. 8 in November 2000, she finished this year No. 35.