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History, Like, It's Distracting

Tennis: Ceremony honoring past champions bothers Capriati, but she still beats Basuki. Davenport is next up.

July 02, 2000|LISA DILLMAN | TIMES STAFF WRITER

WIMBLEDON, England — There was a classy, graceful ceremony on Centre Court for current and former players, most of them champions. Bjorn Borg was back for the first time in almost 19 years. The greats were in the same place, making a stroll down memory lane.

It could have been, quite easily, an episode for the History Channel. Manuel Santana kissed the hand of the Duchess of Gloucester. The applause grew when Borg appeared, followed by Virginia Wade and Martina Navratilova, and John McEnroe received one of the loudest ovations.

Starting off the proceedings were the Scots Guards. Over on Court 3, Jennifer Capriati didn't like what she was hearing during her third-round match against Yayuk Basuki. The music from Centre Court was bothering Capriati so much that she stopped playing and asked for the referee.

"I think it shows, yeah, that they really maybe, you know, are not thinking about the other players that are playing out there, trying to win and do their best," said Capriati, who won, 7-6 (4), 6-0.

"I think they could choose another time maybe to do that kind of thing. I think it was pretty annoying for all the players."

Another time?

Maybe Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King and Margaret Court could come back when it was bit more convenient for Capriati?

"I just said, 'What's going on? Can they turn off the music?' " Capriati said. "He [the referee] said they were pretty much done in 10 minutes. I just said, 'I could be down a set and a half already. I don't have 10 minutes to spare.' "

The music died, eventually. Basuki was not pleased that Capriati broke her momentum by calling the referee.

"Well, it stopped the music. I'm not concerned with that," Capriati said.

Capriati will play defending champion Lindsay Davenport in the fourth round. Davenport, even though she had a match to play later in the afternoon, managed to make time for the ceremony. She enjoyed taking part in the event and went on to defeat Paola Suarez of Argentina, 6-4, 6-2. For her, it was an improvement after her second-round escape against Elena Likhovtseva.

"I'll take two sets over three sets when I'm down any day," she said. "It got much better as the match went along. The second set was a lot better. I felt like I was timing the ball a lot better than I had the first two matches."

Also advancing were fifth-seeded Venus Williams, sixth-seeded Monica Seles and ninth-seeded Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario of Spain, as well as 17-year-old Jelena Dokic of Australia. Dokic, who reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals in 1999, defeated qualifier Brie Rippner, 6-2, 6-1.

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