Seventh-seeded American Serena Williams has won the Australian Open tennis tournament by beating top-seeded countrywoman Lindsay Davenport in Saturday's final in Melbourne. Williams came back from a first set loss for a 2-6, 6-3, 6-0 victory.
Williams was obviously not playing her best in the opening set, trailing 4-1, before receiving 15 minutes of treatment on the sidelines for a minor back injury. She lost the first set, but battled back to win 10 consecutive games in a stretch on the way to beating the world Number One Davenport, 2-6, 6-3, 6-0.
Williams' victory ends an 18-month drought without a major title. It was her seventh career Grand Slam title and her second Australian Open championship. She won the event in 2003, then missed defending her title in 2004 due to a knee injury. With the win, Williams moves up from seventh in the women's world rankings to Number Two.
"I am excited to be Number Two now,? she said. ?It has been a long way coming back. I am almost to my goal, and it feels great. And this Grand Slam win, obviously, is great for me."
Davenport last won the Australian Open in 2000. She says things fell apart after the first set.
"I felt like I was playing well, and, you know, in control, pretty much, in the match, moving the ball around well, and then made a few quick errors, and right there, kind of opened the door for her [Williams], and she just kept going through it,? she explained. ?She raised her game, she started serving well and hard, and, at the end, I mean, I definitely was a little bit, I think, just, overall, a little bit fatigued."
The men's final is Sunday, with third-seeded Australian Lleyton Hewitt taking on fourth seed Marat Safin of Russia. Hewitt is the first Australian playing for the men's title in 17 years.