SAN DIEGO, August 1 (Reuters) - Martina Hingis, who retired in 2002 before making a successful full-time return to the WTA Tour at the start of this year, warned Russia's Anna Kournikova to be fully prepared before pondering a comeback of her own.
"She'd really have to commit herself and grind it out," Hingis told reporters after revealing Kournikova offered to reprise their doubles partnership that won the 2002 Australian Open title.
"She used to have her mother and a great support team to help her and she doesn't have that now. You can't just play one week and come back. You have to be more professional about it," Hingis said at the Acura Classic, where she is seeded eighth.
The 25-year-old Kournikova, a former world number one doubles player who was ranked in the top 20 in singles from 1998 to 2000, has not played on the tour since cutting her 2003 season short due to a back injury.
She competed this year in the World TeamTennis event and has never officially declared she will not play competitively again.
Hingis played an exhibition with Kournikova last December and says the pin-up Russian must improve before returning.
"She was okay," said the Swiss. "But she would have to train. I don't want to go out there and lose first round."
"It would be great to see her out there.
(Writing by Matt Cronin; editing by Miles Evans, Asia Sports Desk +61 392861435; email@example.com