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Triumphs special  [2002 Australian Open]

FINAL: Capriati D Hingis 4-6, 7-6(7), 6-2

Jen in the 2002 defended her previous year's title. She played again against Martina Hingis and she won in three sets. In Australian weather, with high humidity, absence of wind and a scorching heat (38°C) were Jen's allies and she proved to tolerate the situation more than the weak Martina Hingis. It must be underlined, particularly, what she said at the end of the match. She dedicated her victory to some of her sorely unhealthy friends (particularly to Darren) saying that was she suffered that day on the court was nothing compared to what they had to go through every day. She said: "I was struggling on the court today but it's no comparison to a lot of the friends who I have who are struggling right now, and especially one in particular right now, I'd like to say, Darren, thanks for coming and I love you".

Walking toward the final
 FIRST ROUND. Capriati D Talaja 6-4, 6-1
 SECOND ROUND. Capriati D Tu 6-1, 6-3
 THIRD ROUND. Capriati D Daniilidou 6-2, 3-6, 6-1
 FOURTH ROUND. Capriati D Grande 6-3, 7-6
 QUARTERFINAL. Capriati D Mauresmo 6-2, 6-2
 SEMIFINAL. Capriati D Clijsters 7-5, 3-6, 6-1

Final's report
In the first set Martina Hingis (who was playing with a vengeance) played with an aggressive attitude and she led 3-0 with one break point. In the sixth game she again stole the serve from Jennifer (5-1) and served for the first set. Jen recovered and scored a break (5-2). She kept her serve (5-3) and imposed a second break point on Martina Hingis after having denied a set point (5-4). When it seemed that the match was balanced, Jen lost her serve for the third time and was down one set (6-4).
The beginning of the second set was like the first one. Jen lost her serve and was losing 0-3. The match seemed to be compromised but the scorching heat had its own consequences on the Helvetian player who seemed to be more & more tired. From this moment on, the two players took more time between the games to find refreshments and they both had a physiological break that lasted several minutes. At 4-1, Jennifer denied a break point and  kept her serve to reach (4-2). In the seventh game Martina Hingis lost her serve  (4-3) but Jen did the same later (5-3) bringing  Hingis closer to triumph. Jen didn’t give up and won the ninth game (5-4), denying Hingis a match point and catching up with Hingis to reach 5-5. At 6-5 for Martina, Jen saved two more match points, thus entering a tiebreak. TIE BREAK. Martina Hingis started to serve - 0-1, 1-1, 1-2, 1-3, 2-3, 3-3, 4-4, 5-4, 5-5, 5-6 (Jennifer was one point away from the third set), 6-6, 7-6 (Martina had one point left), 7-7, 7-8 (Jennifer was one point far from the third set), and finally 7-9.
The third set seemed easier. Martina was exhausted while Jennifer was stronger than ever. She started to serve (1-0). In the following game, Martina Hingis saved two balls she held her serve (1-1) and then she broke Jennifer's serve (2-1). Jen did the same and she held her service turn denying another break point. Hingis didn't have anything left, mentally or physically, and she finally gave up at 3-2. Jennifer Capriati won four consecutive games to win the Australian Open for the second time and in the process became the first tennis player to win a Grand Slam by denying her opponent four match points.

WTA article
Melbourne, Australia - Jennifer Capriati pulled her greatest comeback on court saving four match points to defeat Martina Hingis 4-6, 7-6 (7), 6-2 and claiming her second straight Australian Open title on Saturday at Melbourne Park.
"I was down match points and it was such a struggle for me and I didn't know if I was really going to pull that out or if I was going to win," said Capriati. "I just kept going, point by point, and things turned around."
The match, played in heat nearing 100 degrees, featured long rallies, 15 breaks of serve, two bathroom breaks, a 10-minute rest after the second set and several displays of anger.
After losing the first set 4-6, Capriati fell behind 0-4 but then saved three match points at 3-5 and 5-6 to force a tie -breaker. She then saved a fourth one at 6-7 during the tie-break and finally claimed the set when Hingis returned a wide backhand. Both players suffering from the unbearable heat conditions, agreed to take a 10-minute break before starting the third set. Hingis grabbed a 2-1 lead in the third. Capriati, confident from her second set comeback, won the next two games and cruised to victory in 31 minutes.
"I felt like my head was all over the place, but after I lost the second set, she had the momentum," said Hingis. "I didn't really believe in it anymore, even when I was up 2-1 (with a break in the third set)."
For Hingis who has now lost four consecutive Australian Open finals, that loss was even more disappointing as she failed to capitalize on all of her four match points. Despite losing after being so close to winning a Grand Slam title in three years, Hingis was satisfied with her performance.
"I exceeded my expectations at this tournament," she said. " I think I proved myself again that I can play really good tennis and I can have the chance to beat anybody out there, so I've got to keep my head up and go for it. Sometimes it takes a little longer," she said. "You can't expect everything happening right away. It is not like you snap your fingers and you are going to win a Grand Slam. So I think I have to work even harder now and just continue what I've been doing."
Capriati is the only woman to have saved four match points to win a Grand Slam title.
"I don't know which one was better for me, winning last year or winning this year," she said.

 Capriati dedicates win to dying friend
 Number one for all the right reasons

 01/26/'02 - FINAL won over Martina Hingis



The last game of the match

My '10 years after' tribute