Two Of Top Five Now Entered As Davenport Makes Sixth Visit To New Haven
|Lindsay Davenport of the USA hits a backhand against Vera Zvonareva of Russia during day seven of the Australian Open Grand Slam at Melbourne Park January 25, 2004 in Melbourne, Australia© Clive Brunskill/Getty Images|
NEW HAVEN, Conn., April 19, 2004 – One of the main attractions at Pilot Pen Tennis presented by Michelob ULTRA, A USTA Event, over the past few years has been the personable American star Lindsay Davenport. Today, the world’s fourth-ranked player and winner of three Grand Slams was added to the field for the sixth time. Davenport, who has been a finalist at the Pilot Pen in each of her five previous appearances, is seeking her first title at the 2004 event, set for August 20-28 at the Connecticut Tennis Center at Yale.
Davenport, 27, reached the Pilot Pen Tennis final last year, falling to Jennifer Capriati. Her previous championship appearances in New Haven ended in defeats to Venus Williams in 1999, 2001, and 2002. Davenport has won 40 career WTA Tour singles titles, including three Grand Slam wins (U.S. Open 1998; Wimbledon 1999; Australian Open 2000), and began this year by successfully defending her championship at Tokyo in February and also won the clay court event at Amelia Island earlier this month. Davenport also has 35 career doubles crowns.
She joins world No. 2 Kim Clijsters of Belgium and No. 21 Maria Sharapova of Russia as early entries into the 2004 Pilot Pen Tennis field. Sharapova committed to the event in early March and Clijsters followed last week.
“I’m looking forward to returning to New Haven, since the Pilot Pen is one of my favorite tournaments to play,” said Davenport. “I’m also excited about the prospect of representing my country in the Olympics in Athens, but regardless, I will be ready for the Pilot Pen.”
“Lindsay is a proven star and a big draw at the Pilot Pen,” said Anne Worcester, Pilot Pen Tennis tournament director. ”Connecticut tennis fans and millions who watch on television will again have the privilege of seeing this true champion in action at the Connecticut Tennis Center.”
Now competing in her 14th year on Tour, Davenport quickly moved back into the game’s elite last year after knee surgery sidelined her for much of 2002. She ended 2003 strongly, reaching the quarterfinals at Wimbledon and the semifinals at the U.S. Open, claiming her sixth top-four finish in the past seven years. Davenport battled through some foot and leg injuries last year, including one that caused her retirement in the fourth game of the second set in last year’s Pilot Pen final, but has recovered well and has been near full strength recently.
About Pilot Pen Tennis presented by Michelob ULTRA
“New England’s Premier Women’s Sports Entertainment Event of the Year.” The 2004 Pilot Pen presented by Michelob ULTRA (www.pilotpentennis.com), A USTA Event, will be held August 20-28 at the Connecticut Tennis Center at Yale. Two of the world’s top five and three of the top-20-ranked players, including Kim Clijsters, Lindsay Davenport and teen sensation Maria Sharapova, have already committed to the tournament. A total of 13.5 hours of 2003 Pilot Pen Tennis action were televised nationally on ESPN, ESPN2 and CBS Sports. For information on tickets, travel packages, sponsorships or on how to become a volunteer at the 2004 Pilot Pen, call the Pilot Pen Tennis office at 203/776-7331 or 888/99-PILOT.