1999 U.S. OPEN
Flushing Meadows, New York City
September 3, 1999
M. HINGIS/S. Kloesel
An interview with:
WTA: Martina wants to say something before we start.
MARTINA HINGIS: I heard this morning that a certain person always asking for my autograph over and over at every tournament. I'd like to give something to that certain person, it's important to me, to Richard.
RICHARD WILLIAMS: Thank you, very much.
MARTINA HINGIS: It's pretty big, huh? I'm sure it's going to fit you. It's extra large. You don't have to ask me anymore.
RICHARD WILLIAMS: Thank you, very much. God bless you.
WTA: Questions for Martina.
Q. Do you have any of your grade school report cards or anything to show us? They were saying that you didn't have any education.
MARTINA HINGIS: I don't have any education (laughter)? I mean, I chose something else, education, going every day into the school. I think I learned still enough on traveling. I don't think I'm that dumb (laughter). I'd like to see some other people talking in three languages. It's not always easy. It's a little misunderstanding sometimes what I say. I don't always mean like to hurt anybody.
Q. Do you ever miss actually having gone to school on a regular basis and having a formal education?
MARTINA HINGIS: Never missed that. I was always very happy about, you know, the thing I'm doing right now. I don't think the money's too bad either (laughter).
Q. He's really always asked you for your autograph?
MARTINA HINGIS: Yeah, basically every single tournament when I saw him when the girls were playing, yeah.
Q. And you said no every single tournament?
MARTINA HINGIS: He was always showing his arm. I was like, "Why waste it? If you take a shower, it's going to go off anyway," so....
Q. Did he ask you to sign his arm?
MARTINA HINGIS: Yeah, he wanted me to sign his arm, yeah. I never do that (laughter).
Q. Was this sort of a truce offering because it happened this week that there have been a few words between the two camps that you decided that this is the time to give him the autograph?
MARTINA HINGIS: I think it's perfect timing, yeah.
Q. Did you read this in the paper yourself?
MARTINA HINGIS: Somebody, like the players, told me, then I got the newspaper. I just really quickly, you know. Serena came in before I had to go on court, and we both were kind of laughing about it. She came like straight at me. She was like, Did you read that? The people, they always blow it up. They just try to make something big out of nothing really. You know, it was just things happen. Between us, I mean, there is great relationship basically. I mean, we have fun when we played Arthur Ashe Day. We talk normally.
Q. Earlier Richard Williams said that he loved you and that you were a good human being. What are your thoughts about Richard? What do you think of him?
MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I think just the whole family... I mean, the girls, they play great tennis. They bring a lot to women's tennis, athleticism, the whole thing. People talk about them. They talk about women's tennis, so in that thing, I think it's a great deal having them on Tour. They're also playing great tennis. Also you can't really say it's boring right now.
Q. So you're not tired of him saying, "We're going to have another all-Williams final"?
MARTINA HINGIS: Well, if it's going to happen, it's not too good for us, for me. But, I mean, he said it once. In Key Biscayne it happened. You know, I mean, people are free. I mean, this is a free country, so they basically can say whatever you want. You know, I still am going to try to beat them.
Q. When you say that things are okay between you, we hear you say that they kind of have a big mouth.
MARTINA HINGIS: No, it wasn't them. It was like him. He always has his comments. You know, it's fun. Because I'm better than them so far, I'm the No. 1, and not them.