STANFORD, Calif., July 30 -- For the second time this month, Venus Williams overpowered Lindsay Davenport in straight sets to dethrone her as champion of an event, winning the Bank of the West Classic Sunday.
Just as she did at Wimbledon three weeks ago, Williams showed she has as much or more power than Davenport, who is considered the most powerful women's player. She blasted her way to a 6-1, 6-4 victory and continued her victory march toward the U.S. Open.
"This is definitely nice, to come off with a win after Wimbledon," said Williams, who collected $87,000.
Although the rankings do not show it, Williams considers herself the best women's player right now.
"I'm playing pretty confident right now," she said. "Not on paper, but in my mind, yes. And when I go out on the court for a match, I have to think in my mind I'm No. 1."
"She is playing so well," Davenport admitted. "This is the best match she's played against me."
Williams dethroned Davenport as Wimbledon champion with a 6-3, 7-6 (7-3) victory, her first in a Grand Slam. She had an easier time Sunday and gained a measure of revenge after losing here to Davenport the previous two years.
Williams wasted little time grabbing control of the match. She scorched a forehand winner down the line to go up 3-1 and was in control of the first set from there.
Davenport appeared to turn it around in the second set, opening a 3-1 lead when Williams netted a backhand on the seventh deuce point of the game. But with a chance to go up a second break, she committed three unforced errors off her backhand.
Williams got even at 4-4 when Davenport's game deserted her again. She hit a forehand long off a crosscourt forehand by Williams, who broke and served out the match.
"Just when I had a break, I couldn't get on top of it," said Davenport. "It was tough to lose at 4-all. She's definitely on one of those rolls. I don't think I played that bad. I was going for my shots. I just made a few errors at the wrong time."
On match point, Williams hit a deep forehand, which Davenport answered with weak forehand that did not reach the net.
Williams and Davenport expect to see a lot of each other over the next several weeks, which constitutes the hardcourt season leading up to the U.S. Open beginning Aug. 28.