Martina Hingis - Power Overcomes Finesse
Power Overcomes Finesse
During 1999, the supremely confident Hingis began to show cracks in her armor. Prone to speak bluntly and with small regard for tact, Hingis found herself in hot water at the 1999 Australian Open when she reportedly made derisive comments about her openly gay opponent in the finals, Amelie Mauresmo. Hingis was roundly criticized for her remark, which she refused to acknowledge or apologize for. Hingis defeated Mauresmo in the finals to win the Australian Open for the third consecutive year. She followed at the French Open by throwing a tantrum in the finals, which she lost to Graf, that she later called the only moment she regrets in her career.
Hingis reached the Australian Open finals once again in 2000 and 2001, but failed to retake the title either year. Although she went on to win nine tournaments in 2000 and ended the year once again ranked No. 1, something about her self-perceived invincibility had vanished. At Wimbledon in 2001 she won just two games in her first-round loss to unseeded Jelena Dokic. The media began to question whether Hingis's finesse game could stand up to the sheer power of players like Lindsay Davenport, Venus and Serena Williams. Questions also began to raised regarding Hingis's drive to win.
In 2002 Hingis played in the finals of the Australian Open for the sixth consecutive year, but lost to Jennifer Capriati, 4-6, 7-6(7), 6-2, despite having four match points during the second set. In May 2002 Hingis began to experience nagging injuries. She had surgery on her left ankle and withdrew from the French Open and Wimbledon. She returned for the U.S. Open but lost in the fourth round to Seles. Hingis made several attempts to return to the game, but ended up withdrawing from the Chase Championships and the 2003 Australian Open.
Whether Hingis has the determination and physical ability to return to the game is open for debate. Clearly, however, she came into her career at a perfect time, when women's tennis, rattled by scandalous behavior, was looking for someone gregarious, lively, and confident. Hingis, simply by being a teenager who glowed in the attention from the media and dazzled her opponents on the court, provided a much-needed breath of fresh air to game of tennis.
- Martina Hingis - Awards And Accomplishments
- Martina Hingis - Dominates Women's Tennis
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