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Clijsters Retains  Number 1 Tennis Ranking - 2003-10-12

Kim Clijsters held on to the women's number-one world tennis ranking Sunday, as she defeated fellow-Belgian Justine Henin-Hardenne to win the Porsche Grand Prix tournament in Filderstadt, Germany.

Clijsters got a measure of revenge after losing to Henin-Hardenne in the finals of the French and U.S. Opens, as she defeated her shorter opponent 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 in a thrilling match. Henin-Hardenne fought off a set point in the 12th game and appeared to be tougher mentally than her Belgium rival, whom she had routed in straight sets in her two grand slam wins. But it was Clijsters who won all the key points in the second and third sets, in which they exchanged brilliant shots as they battled for almost every game.

It was just the eighth time since the computer rankings were instituted in 1975 that the number one met the second-ranked player in a head-to-head duel for the world number one spot. The last time came when the American Williams sisters faced each other in the 2002 U.S. Open final, which was won by Serena.

Wimbledon champion Roger Federer of Switzerland successfulled defended his CA Trophy tennis championship Sunday by beating Spaniard Carlos Moya in the final in Vienna, Austria.

The top-seeded Federer needed only one hour and 32 minutes to beat Moya 6-3, 6-3, 6-3, and win his sixth ATP title of the year. He is tied with American Andy Roddick for the most championships this season.

Moya didn't have a single breakpoint in the entire match, while Federer converted his fourth in game eight of the final set. Federer became the first player to successfully defend the title since American Brian Gottfried in 1983. With the victory, the 22-year-old Federer set a new ATP best with 67 wins and only 14 losses this season. The win leaves the Swiss player locked in a three-way battle for the year-end number-one spot with Roddick and Spaniard Juan Carlos Ferrero.

Top-seeded Rainer Schuettler of Germany won his second straight tennis tournament Sunday, by beating home-country player Arnaud Clement at the Lyon Open in France.

Schuettler, who won the ATP tournament in Tokyo last week, beat Clement 7-5, 6-3 to pick up his fourth career title.

The 27-year-old Schuettler is the first German player to win back-to-back titles since Tommy Haas won in Vienna, Austria, and Stuttgart, Germany, in 2001. Clement was also trying for a second straight title, after taking the Moselle Open in Metz last Sunday.