I did not watch a lot of tennis in the 90s (because I was too young) but when I think about how Martina Hingis played "chess" on the court with her opponents it was really great. The players were more thinking of how to play the ball best and it was not all about power.
But nowadays, the tennis game is totally different. Those who are having a great serve and play with a lot of power right from the baseline are those who are in the top 10. There are not so many serve and volley players anymore. Furthermore, we have to differentiate the players by age.
When we take a further look at those players who are currently ranked in the top 10, we see Mauresmo, Schnyder, Pierce and Davenport who are the "older" generation which means that they are at least 26 years or even older. But then we also have the "young" generation from 19 to 25 years with Clijsters, Henin-Hardenne, Sharapova, Dementieva, Petrova and Kuznetsova who are playing with a lot of power which is really essential for their game. I really have the feeling that more and more players do not learn how to play clever like a Martina Hingis or Steffi Graf but how to serve as hard as possible, playing with a lot of power from the baseline and the movement is very important.
From my point of view, the trainers have to go back to the roots and teach the young girls how to play effective with both power and cleverness. If this does not happen, we will only have players who are all playing the same and this will be annoying for the spectators.
My 3 favorite players are: Patty Schnyder ~ Roger Federer ~ Martina Hingis
Other players: Belinda Bencic ~ Kim Clijsters ~ Timea Bacsinszky ~ Elena Dementieva ~ Stefanie Voegele ~ Anna Kournikova ~ Maria Sharapova ~ Vera Zvonareva ~ Daniela Hantuchova ~ Elena Bovina ~ Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova ~ Monica Seles ~ Jennifer Capriati ~ Serena and Venus Williams ~ Klara Koukalova