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1. glad you are back, Rollo

2. I recently talked to someone on the reproach that she never won a singles title: She had reached the final at the maybe 5th most important tennis tournament on the globe, what many many others couldn't and cannot achieve in their career...
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Reactions: AwonderfulKiwi

25,372 Posts
You are so right WonderfulKiwi. Anna and Martina Hingis were doubles masters extrodinaire. And in singles she did make some big finals. Technically her forehand let her down long before the scads of double faults she later became know for.

At her best I liked watching on grass. Lets not forget she made the semis of her first Wimbledon!

3,951 Posts
1999: Venus vs Anna in the final of "the Lipton"-then the 5th biggest event in tennis.

Anna knocked off 4 top tenners to reach the final.
Thanks for posting that - I decided to watch the whole match, which is something I haven't bothered doing with any of these embedded videos, and I'm glad I did. Some observations, especially the first three highlighting differences from today's playing conditions:

1. No sitting down at the end of a set if the running tally of games was an even number, although they were allowed to sit down after the first game of the match. Just chuck the balls to the other end and carry on as usual.

2. Two toilet breaks allowed for each player, which could be taken at any change of ends - not just at the end of a set.

3. No challenges available for potentially bad line calls, but there was only one ball called in which the replay showed was out - and it was well out. Kournikova got robbed of the point and quite possibly the game. Apart from that there wasn't a single murmur from either player.

4. The crowd - I was surprised that the stands were nowhere near full, but also very pleased to see that the cheering was pretty equal, no matter who won the point.

5. Kournikova stayed on or inside the baseline for every serve from Williams, even for those well over 100 mph, which you simply wouldn't see these days.

6. Kournikova hit more aces than Williams (3-0) - again, not what you would expect.

7. Williams's unforced errors cost her points - Kournikova's, especially at the end of the second set and all through the third, cost her games.

8. Although she was slow getting off the mark, Williams was rather more consistent once she settled down. However, even when she made really good shots during rallies, Kournikova usually came back with even better ones. Some of her winners were utterly amazing - and some of her unforced errors were utterly atrocious.

What you have to remember here, too, is that Williams (ranked 11) was 17, and Kournikova (ranked 25) was 16. To get to a final of this stature at that age is something pretty special (and Williams had already reached the US Open final).
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