Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Davenport Looks to Solidify Place among the Best Gold Medalist Has High Hopes

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Davenport Looks to Solidify Place among the Best Gold Medalist Has High Hopes

Article excerpt

Four years after being named Rookie of the Year by Tennis

Magazine, Lindsay Davenport reached a career-high ranking of No.

2.

It lasted seven days.

But the pleasure Davenport has gotten from reaching that

ranking has lingered.

"I was No. 2 for one week. That was so funny," she said from

her home in Newport Beach, Calif., where she is spending the

holidays before leaving for the Australian Open later this

month.

"Now, who knows what I can do."

That's the question everyone, including Davenport, wants

answered. But if 1997 was any indication, Davenport can do a lot

in 1998.

Last year was the most successful for the 6-foot-2 1/2 Olympic

gold medalist. Besides the No. 2 ranking, she won six titles,

including the Bausch & Lomb Championships on Amelia Island,

ended up third on the money list with $1,533,101 and finished

the year ranked No. 3.

"For me, it's been terrific, exciting, kind of unbelievable. To

win six titles, it's unthinkable to me," she said.

Now, everyone wonders when -- and if -- she can win a Grand

Slam singles title and solidify her place among the best in

women's tennis. (She won two Grand Slam doubles titles last year

at the Australian Open and the U.S. Open).

Davenport isn't surprised by doubters.

"The better you do, you've got to learn to expect people

expecting more from you," she said. "I'm never going to be the

type of player who has only four or five losses a year, like

Hingis."

But what surprised Davenport last year was her consistency.

She won in Oklahoma City, then returned home to California to

play at Indian Wells, Calif., in front of her friends and

family who live two hours away. It was the biggest victory of

her career and the highlight of 1997.

At that same tournament, she became the first woman to win both

the doubles and singles titles, something she did weeks later on

Amelia Island.

"When you play singles and doubles, you don't get a lot of time

to play," she said. …

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