Spokeswoman: Jennifer Capriati recovering from ‘accidental’ prescription drug overdose

By Antonio Gonzalez, AP
Monday, June 28, 2010

Capriati recovering from ‘accidental’ OD of meds

Former tennis star Jennifer Capriati was recovering Monday from an accidental overdose of prescribed medication, a family spokeswoman said.

The 34-year-old Capriati, once ranked No. 1 in a career sidetracked by personal troubles, was in stable condition and expected to make a full recovery, spokeswoman Lacey Wickline told The Associated Press. She declined to identify the medication.

Capriati was rushed to a South Florida hospital early Sunday morning, she said. Wickline would not say how Capriati was found or who called emergency services.

“In response to an outpouring of concern and support shown by Jennifer’s fans and friends worldwide, we would like to acknowledge that Jen is recuperating at a South Florida hospital from an accidental overdose of medication prescribed to Jen by her personal physician,” Wickline said. “Jen is recovering fully and stably.”

Public records show Capriati owns a condo on Singer Island in Palm Beach County, Fla. Riviera Beach city spokeswoman Rose Anne Brown said a person was transported from Capriati’s address Sunday morning but could not provide details, citing privacy laws. Nearby hospitals did not have a patient listed under Capriati’s name.

Celebrity website TMZ first reported that Capriati was hospitalized.

At Wimbledon, Venus and Serena Williams paused after wins Monday to extend their concern.

“I probably will definitely see how that goes and pray for everyone involved,” Serena Williams said. “If there’s any way I can do anything to help, reach out, I definitely will do that.”

Added Venus Williams: “I remember her match against Monica (Seles) in the semifinals of the (French) Open. I remember watching that and just thinking how great that tennis was. So definitely a lot of fond memories just watching her growing up, and obviously even playing against her, respecting her game so much.”

Kim Clijsters also posted on her Twitter site, “I haven’t been able to stop thinking about Jen! I hope she makes it through ok and can get some help!”

A child prodigy on the tennis court, Capriati burned out and retired several times from a game she had been pushed to play nearly her entire life.

Capriati was arrested in 1993 for shoplifting at a Florida mall, and again the next year for marijuana possession. She also spent more than a week in drug rehabilitation in 1994, and acquaintances alleged she used crack cocaine and heroin during a weekend party before her arrest at a Coral Gables motel.

Capriati, however, came back strong several times from both injuries and personal issues.

She won three majors — two Australian Opens and one French Open between 2001-02 — to go along with her gold medal in the 1992 Olympics. She was the youngest semifinalist at the French Open in 1990, when at age 14 she lost to Seles, the eventual champion.

Capriati reached the U.S. Open semifinals in 2003, losing to Justine Henin. She failed to gain any momentum from that run and soon faded from the game again.

AP Sports Writer Steven Wine in Wimbledon, England, contributed to this report.

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