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I know it has been probably posted before...and it is old. Someone please nominate me as the most pathetic, emotional male on this board. (I am getting teary thinking about her.) :sad:


Martina Hingis had talent to spare — and that was part of the problem.

By Mary Carillo

Photo by Ron Angle

From the April 2003 issue of TENNIS Magazine




Way back when Martina Hingis wasn't Martina Hingis yet, just a sublime squirt of a girl, really, I asked Nick Bollettieri what he thought of her. The old coach had seen 'em come and go and he knew what he was looking at. "Let me tell you something about Hinkus, Mary deah-uh," he said, his voice all gravel and dust. "She's got the eye of the tiger and the nose of the elephant." Of course, I scrawled this down in my notebook, and I'm rereading those pages now, smiling in agreement with Nick's strange but accurate assessment of that child. Hingis was a different animal altogether, much too young to know how to be ruthless or to absorb everything she was ever taught about tennis, but all the while structuring points with an originality that reminded me of John McEnroe. Her career was following the same cocksure path as John's as well. There was none of the usual trial and error with those two — it was all trial and success.

And they both left too early.

No, Hingis may not be gone for good. But she says that returning to tennis, at least in the short term, is "inconceivable." Her ankle injuries have lingered, and she's having too much fun these days riding horses, going to school to perfect her English, and doing whatever else she wants whenever she wants.

It's quite amazing, really, the thought that her career could be over at 22. It wasn't much more than a year ago that she held four match points for the 2002 Australian Open title before succumbing to the heat of both the day and Jennifer Capriati's ground strokes. But last year, Hingis was like McEnroe after his best was gone, after the power hitters pounded the craft out of his game. A certain fatalism appeared in Hingis. It was more than just the confidence and firepower from the other end of the court that knocked her back; she was shaken by an inner wind. And even if she were to attempt a comeback and rededicate herself to the game, she'll never play above the rim.


In 1997, Hingis won three of the four majors and it was insane how easy she made that look. Whether she meant to or not (and surely she meant it plenty of the time), she made opponents look hapless and helpless. She had all the time in the world to decide how best to deliver the death blow to end a rally — a twisting short-court backhand, a drop shot, a short arcing lob just barely over her opponent's racquet. Whatever she chose, it was somehow insulting, and it seemed she'd rule with happy arrogance for years.

Then power happened to her. At first Hingis could handle it, either outwitting her off-balance opponents or waiting for them to miss. When the matches between her and Venus Williams started getting closer and Hingis was asked about the burgeoning rivalry, the kid coolly replied, "What rivalry? She hasn't beaten me yet."

But then Venus did beat her, and so did Lindsay Davenport, and Serena was in the rearview mirror, and Capriati came back. It reminded me of McEnroe's matches with Ivan Lendl, how insulted John became as he started losing to an opponent he considered artless and brutish. Hingis acted the same way, and like McEnroe she had no notable work ethic to combat the amped-up tenor of the tennis. "I'm a player, not a worker," she had said. She was still No. 1, but she was no longer the best player.

Now what? Should we believe it when a 22-year-old athlete says it's over? Is this decision immature and premature or the face of reality? Martina Hingis can't grow taller, but she can grow wiser and still grow up. The real question is, does she think that she still has something left to say?

Nick Bollettieri was right about Hingis — she's a different animal from the rest. To ever return she'd have to evolve into a stronger creature of good habits. More than anything, one with a very large heart.
 

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:sad:
 

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"I am a player, not a worker"...

I love and hate this quote of hers :) :fiery:

...she could have been "a little bit more of a worker" without stopping being a great player...

...but this is very commun to very talented persons, no matter their "activities"...Wasn't Einstein very bad in maths in school as well...?!?

It was a joy to watch her play...

Thanks and good luck Martina :bounce: :wavey:
 

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"I am a player, not a worker"

You love this quote? To me it says she's lazy and has no heart, that she does not have the work ethic of a justine.
 

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The comparison of her attitude with McEnroe's toward Lendl is very revealing.
 

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Which is why she probably won't make a comeback attempt, it would take too much work for her to get back to/near the top.

Seles fought back,Capriati fought back,Graf fought back, Martina(i love you but)she headed for the hills.
 

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DA FOREHAND said:
Which is why she probably won't make a comeback attempt, it would take too much work for her to get back to/near the top.

Seles fought back,Capriati fought back,Graf fought back, Martina(i love you but)she headed for the hills.
Seles, Capriati and Graf fought back, but where did it get them? Monica had to struggle with weight issues, criticism from the media, injuries all the while playing like a shadow of her former self. Capriati came back and did well for herself(better than anything achieved previously), but how much did it really help her? She just acted like a total brat, pissed off just about every player, put too much pressure on herself and didn't seem to enjoy her time at the top and now hasn't won a tournament in nearly 2 years. As for Steffi, well she obviously did end her career very successfully, but she also had to put up with all those injuries. Was it worth it? Maybe for them, but Martina is different. No two people are the same. She doesn't want to spend her time struggling with injuries and the brutal life of the WTA Tour, especially if she won't be doing as well as she did previously. Who'd blame her?
 

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Monica fought back, won a slam and made it to three other slam finals.

Capriati fought back and won three slams, and is still fighting.

Steffi fought back beat the entire top ten, gave the number one player in the world a bagel, beat the number 1,2 &3 players to win the French Open Final, beat the next queen of the grass in Wimbledon quarterfinal on her way to the finals, and ended her career ranked number three in the world.

Martina....well she just cashed in her chips w/out even giving it a shot. Even Tracey Austin attempted a comeback.
 
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DA FOREHAND said:
Monica fought back, won a slam and made it to three other slam finals.

Capriati fought back and won three slams, and is still fighting.

Steffi fought back beat the entire top ten, gave the number one player in the world a bagel, beat the number 1,2 &3 players to win the French Open Final, beat the next queen of the grass in Wimbledon quarterfinal on her way to the finals, and ended her career ranked number three in the world.

Martina....well she just cashed in her chips w/out even giving it a shot. Even Tracey Austin attempted a comeback.
Yes but at what expense?

Monica achieved middling results by Seles-standards once she returned. She, however, suffered various injuries, the grind of the Tour and criticism from the media about her weight.

Jenny did achieve all that, but she also became universally disliked and couldn't handle the pressure at the top and is now struggling and injured.

Steffi did brilliantly. But was it worth it, to push a battered and bruised body to the limit and playing in pain? Her last match was a retirement loss due to injury.

Martina, again, is different from these women. That doesn't make her any less than them. She just chooses not to settle for middling results, the grind of the Tour, putting pressure on herself and playing through pain. Why should she?
 

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Yes it was worth it, because number one they all love/d this game, and number two they never have to live w/the what if's, because they at least gave it a shot, and all of them received some level of payoff.

"NOTHING BEATS A FAILURE BUT A TRY"
 

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You have to know when to stop though - maybe Martina doesn't want to fight. I guess you could call that quitting but it doesn't mean it's the wrong decision ... after all why do it if it makes you unhaapy and you don't have to ?
 

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I think she could have did a Henin if she worked harder with weights or something but I think she had too much ego. Let your ego go and say you're not the best at this time but know that you have the goods to get better. Ya may not win all the time but at least she could have won some of the time.
 
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