Archive for Wednesday, April 7, 2004

Navratilova loses in singles return

Tennis legend falls at Bausch & Lomb Championships

April 7, 2004

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— Martina Navratilova lost her first singles appearance in the United States in more than 10 years, falling to Milagros Sequera, 1-6, 6-3, 6-2, Tuesday at the Bausch & Lomb Championships.

The 47-year-old Navratilova, impressive in the first set, lost the last four games of the second, and lost her serve twice to fall behind 3-0 in the third. She rallied to 3-2 down, but was broken again in the seventh game.

"I lost it mentally," Navratilova said. "I was in and out the last two sets."

Afterward, she received a standing ovation.

"It was sweet," Navratilova said. "The people were obviously excited. It was great to be out there."

Sequera was a last minute replacement for Kristina Brandi of Puerto Rico, who withdrew because of a left foot injury.

Navratilova had not played singles in this country since 1994. She played in Eastbourne, England, two years ago, but that was only because she lost a bet with her trainer. Navratilova defeated Tatiana Panova in one of two matches to become the oldest player to win a WTA Tour singles match (45 years, eight months).

Martina Navratilova returns a shot to Milagros Sequera during the
Bausch & Lomb championships. Navratilova lost, 1-6, 6-3, 6-2,
Tuesday in Amelia Island, Fla.

Martina Navratilova returns a shot to Milagros Sequera during the Bausch & Lomb championships. Navratilova lost, 1-6, 6-3, 6-2, Tuesday in Amelia Island, Fla.

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