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tennisIlove09
Dec 1st, 2005, 01:04 PM
Oz Open Holds Wild Card For Hingis
http://www.sportsmediainc.net/tennisweek/HINGISbeachArtSeitz.jpg
Photo By Art Seitz By Tennis Week
12/01/2005

Martina Hingis has yet to play the first match of her planned comeback, but the six-time Australian Open finalist has a wild card waiting for her in Melbourne if she opts to enter the Australian Open. Australian Open Chief Executive Paul McNamee said today Hingis will be offered a wild card into the Australian Open, which starts on January 16th in Melbourne.


"First and foremost, it's great for the sport that she's coming back," McNamee told Australian Associated Press today. "We just don't know whether it will be in Australia. She'll be very popular and very welcome, but I know she definitely has not finalized her plans as to when she's returning to the tour. She has not made up her own mind yet when she's coming back. We're hoping it's Australia but it's not a fait accompli."

The former No. 1 has enjoyed some of her greatest success at the Australian Open. Hingis captured three consecutive Australian Open crowns from 1997-99 and advanced to six straight Melbourne finals from 1997-2002, compiling a 44-5 career record Down Under. Additionally, Hingis claimed four Australian Open doubles titles, winning the 1997 title with Natasha Zvereva, the 1998 championship with Mirjana Lucic and partnering Anna Kournikova to collect the 1999 and 2002 Australian Open doubles titles.

Hingis has been training in Wollerau, Switzerland under the guidance of her mother and coach, Melanie Molitor. Her manager, Mario Widmer, told Tennis Week on Tuesday Hingis is in the process of finalizing her schedule and deciding where she will officially launch her comeback. Hingis' protected ranking status has expired; she will rely on wild cards to gain entry into the main draws of tournaments.

"Octagon, (the) WTA and the tournaments are working on that," Widmer said when asked where Hingis will make her 2006 debut. "She plans to play a full schedule in January and go from there."

It's possible Hingis could begin her comeback at the Tier II Sydney tournament, which begins January 9th. Hingis has had success in Sydney in the past, winning the event in 2001 and 2002, and would face top 20 competition in Sydney. Though she could consider the Tier III Gold Coast event or Tier IV tournaments in Auckland, Hobart or Canberra.

Related Story: Hingis Announces Comeback (http://www.sportsmediainc.com/tennisweek/index.cfm?func=showarticle&newsid=14336&bannerregion=)

alfajeffster
Dec 1st, 2005, 01:21 PM
Oh darned. Here I was thinking she was announcing her comeback, and then skipping the Australian (Martina's have a habit of doing that to avoid certain players and the surface itself in Melbourne) in favor of playing her first match (without any lead-up tourneys) at the scene of her greatest triumph- Roland Garros.:lol:

pinkfrog
Dec 1st, 2005, 01:28 PM
Oh darned. Here I was thinking she was announcing her comeback, and then skipping the Australian (Martina's have a habit of doing that to avoid certain players and the surface itself in Melbourne) in favor of playing her first match (without any lead-up tourneys) at the scene of her greatest triumph- Roland Garros.:lol:


ahhh the memories of 1999 :aparty:

Munchen
Dec 1st, 2005, 01:29 PM
I think she should play Auckland or Gold Coast first :yeah:

dinhd82
Dec 1st, 2005, 09:33 PM
Aussies just love Martina! Never heard any other crowd cheer for her any where else.

-VSR-
Dec 1st, 2005, 09:38 PM
I would like to see her enter AusOpen too.

Martian Mel
Dec 1st, 2005, 09:39 PM
Ohhh i really hope that she will play the Aussie Open!!