Martina Hingis 2000 Indian Wells 2nd-Round Interview ( Sports - Women's Tennis )  

2000 Tennis Masters Series at Indian Wells, California, on Saturday, March 11, 2000
Martina Hingis defeated Amy Frazier, 6-3, 6-3

An Interview With MARTINA HINGIS

Q. Were you pleased with your performance out there?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, for a first round match, I think it was a pretty solid performance. You know, I tried some things out there during the match. Yeah, I'm quite pleased with another result, yeah.

Q. Struggled with your serve in a couple of games.

MARTINA HINGIS: Yeah, right in the beginning. I was still a little bit nervous somehow to play her. Last time we played was like Philadelphia. It was a quite close match. I'm like, I have to work to go through that first round. It's not an easy round. I'm quite happy about having that behind me.

Q. You were asked on the court what you do your on days off. Given that we're in the golf capital of the world, have you ever tried your hand at golf? Do you see similarities between golf and tennis?

MARTINA HINGIS: I'm not patient enough for golf (laughter). In Florida where I live now most of the time, it's also pretty much a golf, you know, state in the States. Right on the property we have two golf courses. So far, I only made it out to the driving range, no further. There was a nice pro there. He left to Orlando. I'm like, "Okay, what am I going to do?"

Q. Hitting the balls into the crowd afterwards, kind of your relationship with fans, is that the best part of what you do away from the game itself?

MARTINA HINGIS: Yeah. I mean, I like to go out there and play a fun match. In a way, I see myself as an entertainer. You're going to go out there. This is a huge arena. So many spectators watching you. They want to see something. If I go and see a tournament or watch the guys or whoever , I remember myself when I was like real little, I went to those tournaments, if I would only take a picture or get an autograph or a signed ball, it was always fun for me.

Q. You take this role modeling seriously?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, not role modeling. I never see myself as that. I think I'm still young to be a role model. How can I be that, you know? In a way, for a teenager, I think it's pretty good if you see young people doing something with their lives. They have a chance to go in your footsteps. I see myself being very lucky that I got this chance to do it.

Q. Are you feeling increasingly Americanized?

MARTINA HINGIS: Americanized (laughter).

Q. Last time we talked it was Halloween. Are you growing to like this country more living in Florida?

MARTINA HINGIS: Oh, yeah, I like it very much. I said a few times already that when I -- this time from this trip, Australia and Tokyo, I came back home. It was like going home. For the first time I could say, you know, this is like a new home, yeah. I still like my place in Switzerland, yeah. It was very homey this time. The people know me. They were like, "You did a good job." Since ever I went to that football game, I think people, you know, got so excited about me there. Everybody was like, "Hey, I saw you at the football game." Nobody cares if I do well somewhere else playing tennis. "I saw you on TV."

Q. What game was that?

MARTINA HINGIS: Buccaneers against, who was that, I don't know, the other team? I forgot.

Q. Was that in the playoffs?

MARTINA HINGIS: No. It was to get in the playoffs. I know they lost to St. Louis in the semis.

Q. How about when you walk in the local mall there in Tampa, do people recognize you?

MARTINA HINGIS: Yeah, once in a while they do, or when I go out in a restaurant, like Bennigan's (ph) or Chili's or Outback, they do recognize me once in a while. It's different when you're at a tournament, you expect people to come up to you. But they're very nice there. They always say, "Keep up your good work. We enjoy your game. Just hope you do well." Just very nice, very sympatic (sic), compared to maybe Europe, there's no jealousy, nothing like that, they just like what you're doing. They enjoy the game and the sport a lot more, I think, here in the States.

Q. As competitive as the women's game is now with so many terrific young players, is that pushing all of you to a higher level together?

MARTINA HINGIS: Definitely does. But I still think, you know, with that rule that the young players are not allowed to play, there's a little distance now with the other players. They just don't have that experience. They don't get to play the top players as I still had the chance, being 14. You don't see that very often that a youngster beats a top player. They might have good matches against us, but very seldom that they beat us. I was given that chance. A little bit it's been taken away from because they're so limited. I mean, the top, top players, I think it's a great quality of tennis, yeah.

Q. Still working with Mike?

MARTINA HINGIS: Still working with Mike, yeah. He's fun.

Q. What's the bench press up to?

MARTINA HINGIS: The leg press or (indicating)?

Q. This one (indicating).

MARTINA HINGIS: I don't know. It's like he's doing it. I don't even look at it. When I'm like here at the tournaments, mostly what I do is like the bike, a little more running maybe, just a little bit, not as much as when I'm at home and working out.

Q. You feel pretty good then physically?


Q. Are you surprised that Kournikova hasn't won a singles title yet?

MARTINA HINGIS: I think it's a big story about this thing. Every time you would read something about her, it's like, "She still hasn't won a tournament." If you look at the draws, you have to play so many great players in a row. Maybe I don't think she's quite at that level yet that they can beat, you know, three, four players in a row because she's not as high-seeded. She's broken into the Top 10 now. She's a very dangerous player. For that title, I mean, sooner or later I think it's going to happen.

Q. What do you think is holding her back from winning three or four matches in a row which doesn't, on the outside, seem to be that difficult for a top player? Is she inconsistent? Does she not focus well? What do you think it is?

MARTINA HINGIS: I don't know. You would have to ask her how she feels when she goes out there. I can't really answer that question. I don't know. She had this great run one time at the Key Biscayne, then Hilton Head. She beat like four Top-10 players. Ever since then, she beat like once in a while somebody, but not consistent enough yet to be able to win a whole tournament, yeah.

Q. Talking about working out, is that what made you lose weight?

MARTINA HINGIS: I enjoy it more. I think I've been pretty steady now. You always have this like you go with your weight a little bit up-and-down all the time. During the tournament, I try to be more disciplined with the food. That's like the biggest problem here in the States. It's like people always, "What do you want to eat? Go to Mexican, Italian, Chinese, Japanese." There's so many options, so many choices. That's the danger of this country for food. You get these huge portions.

Q. Were you disappointed you weren't able to play Lindsay in that last tournament?

MARTINA HINGIS: First time ever something like that happened, that we got rained out two days in a row. It rained and rained. You know, Sunday still you want to play. You were like waiting, hoping. Then it was like no more people there. Everybody left, they drove away. You are like, "Who are we going to play for?" The stadium would be empty. It would be the TV or you would have to play because it's done. But it wouldn't feel that comfortable for either of us that nobody was there really. It felt strange going into another tournament. You know, I started here. I enjoy myself at that tournament. Maybe we might see each other in the finals again.

Q. What do you think of the venue?

MARTINA HINGIS: I like it very much. I mean, it's a beautiful stadium. I like going out there when I first time hit. I think it was - when did I get here - like Wednesday. I got to play. You just sometimes have the feeling: you go out there and either you like it or you don't. Here I have a very good feeling. Still needs a little bit like you have to find yourself around here.

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