Davenport Beats Venus in Austria


Monday, October 23rd 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6


LINZ, Austria (AP) — Lindsay Davenport ended Venus Williams' 35-match winning streak on Sunday, a run that lasted more than four months, going back to the French Open.

``One loss after 35 wins is not that bad,'' Williams said after the 6-4, 3-6, 6-2 defeat in the final of the $535,000 Generali Ladies Open. ``I have only lost four matches this year.''

Davenport, who had struggled of late against Williams, said she had not thought much about the streak.

``She's had a great run,'' Davenport said.

Williams often outran her opponent, but did not outplay her. She said her first serve often let her down.

``I played good tennis, but she had all the answers,'' Williams said.

Williams, who won the Olympic gold medal in Sydney, lost for the first time since June 6 at the quarterfinals of the French Open.

``I thought the first two sets were pretty even, and I think the deciding point was the 4-2 break in the third,'' Davenport said of the match between the top two seeded players.

Entering this match, Williams had beaten Davenport five of the last six times, including Wimbledon and the U.S. Open. Davenport's previous victory over Williams came in the semifinals in Philadelphia last year.

Davenport, seeded first, broke in the opening game at the dome-shaped Linz Design Center but Williams came back to make it 3-3. Davenport immediately countered and served out the final game of the set without conceding a point.

In the second set, Williams failed to score a point in the third game but went on the attack, offsetting Davenport's strong serves with quick footwork and scoring with decisive passing shots. She wrapped up the set with a powerful passing forehand that left Davenport stranded in midcourt.

Williams started aggressively in the third set, but Davenport broke to go up 4-2 and take command. Davenport took the last two games without yielding a point.

Davenport said she will not play the Kremlin Cup next week because she wants to rest following a string of injuries earlier in the year.

``I played well all week,'' Davenport said. ``Now I just want to go away and prepare for the last two tournaments of the year.''

Although the final featured two premier players, the match failed to produce a sellout. Local interest faded when Austria's Barbara Schett withdrew because of a foot injury in the quarterfinals.



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