I have to say that I do miss "Miss Swiss", Martina Hingis. Remember her famous quote about the Sisters? She didn't mince words - did she? Martina & others felt that at one time - Venus and Serena would make an unforced error - because they were soooo slow - or whatever. Now - if they felt that the Sisters hit wayyyyyy tooooo many ue's - then wouldn't it come a time when the mistakes were limited some? Hopefully? They were actually playing that way - waiting for Venus or Serena to make an error.
Regardless of all that was done and said back then - I always believed the Sisters would improve - and guess what - they believed it also - and hence it is why they improved.
And though Martina would get on my nerves w/some of her trash talking (let's call it what it was) - I eventually got passed all that - and that began when the Sisters started winning more and beating the top players to include Martina.
Those were the good 'ole days. And I do miss Martina "I Was the Wta Tour Queen Before", Hingis.
Bewildered Hingis left seeing double
(Oliver Holt - The Times - July 5, 2000)
The baton of domination is usually passed from old to young, but Venus Williams marched up to Martina Hingis on Centre Court yesterday and ripped it from her like a sixth-former picking on a first-year. As Williams danced her post-match jig of jubilation by the umpire's chair and flirted with the idea of wrapping herself in the Stars and Stripes, it was impossible not to feel a little sad for her victim: 19 is awfully young to be shown the future, especially when it does not include you. There was, though, an inescapable feeling that the mini-classic that these young women played out represented the beginning of a changing of the guard in women's tennis. The elder Williams sister had never beaten Hingis in a grand-slam event before, but she bullied her off the court this time. She was too big, too strong and too athletic, and Hingis could not match her power. As it became obvious that the match was Williams's for the taking, the world No 1 seemed to shrink before our eyes.
What makes it worse, what must be making Hingis feel all the more doleful, is that she is not just up against one Williams. If she had got past Venus, Serena would have been waiting for her in the semifinal. The same scenario played itself out at the US Open last year. Venus, 20, softened Hingis up in the semi-final; Serena, two years younger than her sibling, finished her off in the final.
Now the two titans from Compton in Los Angeles will face each other instead. Yesterday, as soon as she had demolished Lisa Raymond 6-2, 6-0 on Court No 1, Serena headed straight for the players' box on Centre Court to cheer Venus on. Early in the third set she was shaking her fist at her sister, urging her forward when it seemed she might be tightening up. When victory was within sight at 5-4 in the third set, though, Serena went quiet. Too nervous to applaud, she rested her head on the shoulder of her father, Richard, as Venus served. Then she leapt to her feet. It was an ace, and a yell of triumph came from deep inside her sister. She, too, sensed the significance of the result.
Hingis will not disappear. She was masterful in the way that she tried to counter the elder Williams's superior power, pushing and pulling her all over the court, rallying with her as best she could and unsettling her with a series of beautifully disguised drop shots. It was the guile of Hingis against the strength of Williams, but it was also clear that if Williams did not fold she would win. Hingis needed her to weaken to have a chance, but Williams would not oblige.
Much of her play was formidable in its assurance. Williams bewildered Hingis in the first set in particular by taking the ball frighteningly early, rifling returns cross-court and down the line. In the opening games she made the drive-volley her signature shot and executed it unerringly. Only when she ventured to the net for more conventional volleys did she appear tentative, but she kept those occasions to a minimum.
Both sisters were coy about their impending meeting. Neither could bring themselves to say that they wanted to win, neither would say whether they felt they might have some advantage over the other. They contented themselves with memories of their childhoods together, the way their father had told them they were the best from the age of 5, and the tennis rivalry that burned in them even then.
"She's an ace and I'm Momma Smash," Serena said. "We did not really get too competitive when we were kids. Venus has always been so calm, just like a monotone-type person. I'm at the other end of the stick, always going crazy. I think we really balance each other out, especially when we're playing each other. I don't know how it will feel for my parents to watch us play each other. I know I would be heartbroken if my little Jackie had to play my Star. They're my two dogs."
Hingis obviously feels that their bond is so close that she is somehow playing both sisters every time she meets one of them. The relationship between Hingis and the players who have been described as the Sisters Without Mercy, so ruthless have they been, is uneasy to say the least. Last week it got to the point where Hingis was pouring scorn on Serena's lack of experience with men. When she was asked about her match with Venus, though, she answered as if she had been seeing double.
"I missed a couple of opportunities," Hingis said. "Against them, you know, every point is important. It was too bad. I was close. But they have a little advantage here, especially with their serves. I think Serena is a little bit stronger than Venus at the moment but it is a family affair now. I don't know how they will work it out.
"I don't think I have gone backwards in the last three years. I have improved a lot. It has all changed so much since the Williamses started playing better. They were always out there because they're my age, but they didn't used to be as steady or as consistent."
Before she left, Hingis was asked if she still felt like the world No 1. She gave a rather unconvincing answer. She has not won a grand-slam event this year and if the Williams sisters continue their forced march, the next one may be a long time coming.