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Semi-final defeat breaks Capriati's heart

Jennifer Capriati said she felt as though her heart had been ripped out after another US Open let-down on Friday when she was beaten 4-6 7-5 7-6 by Belgium's Justine Henin-Hardenne.

india Updated: Sep 06, 2003 20:15 IST
Reuters
Reuters
PTI

Jennifer Capriati said she felt as though her heart had been ripped out after another US Open let-down on Friday when she was beaten 4-6 7-5 7-6 by Belgium's Justine Henin-Hardenne.

A three-times grand slam winner Capriati has never passed the semi-finals at Flushing Meadows and her US Open dreams vanished at the final four for a third time, disappearing into the New York night with Henin-Hardenne's 7-4 tiebreak victory.

"When I came off the court, I just felt like the whole world was coming down on me," Capriati said, adding she had wept in the locker room. "My heart was being ripped out.

"It's just how I choose to look at it and feel about it. That was a great match and I gave it all I had.

"I still think it is a positive thing for me for the future...I can learn from it."

With defending champion Serena Williams and her twice champion sister Venus injured and not competing at Flushing Meadows, many players, including Capriati, viewed the season's final grand slam as wide open.

Capriati seized her opportunity confidently working her way through to the final four but could not finish off her hard-nosed Belgian opponent despite twice serving for the match and on 11 occasions inching to within two points of victory.

"Probably the next few days it's going to be hard to look at it as just a match," said Capriati. "It's not the end of the world, worse things can happen.

"Before, maybe I would have been more devastated.

"But now instead of looking at myself like I failed, like I'm a failure, I look at myself as just giving it all I had and showing a lot of heart and what I'm made of."

First Published: Sep 06, 2003 17:32 IST