Martina Hingis 2000 US Open 3rd-Round Interview ( Sports - Women's Tennis )  

USTA 2000 US Open at Flushing Meadows, New York, on Friday, September 1, 2000
Martina Hingis defeated Tathiana Garbin, 6-1, 6-0

An Interview With MARTINA HINGIS

Q. Second Grand Slam. Beat her by the same score. A bit surprised with the ease or sort of as you expected?

MARTINA HINGIS: I was taking her very serious today, even though I won the last time so easy. I knew she was injured there a little bit. I mean, I played very well, even if the first match, but it was clay, different surface. She had so far pretty easy wins in the first couple rounds. I had to play well. That's what I did.

Q. Do you think this is one of the best starts you've ever had in a Grand Slam tournament?

MARTINA HINGIS: I had a pretty good start in Australia, beginning of the year, also some other tournaments, but not in a Grand Slam, not like this, no.

Q. Some of the men had been talking about the courts playing fast. Is that something you guys noticed at all?

MARTINA HINGIS: I mean, as everybody knows, the men's and women's games are so different. The serve is getting more and more important to everyone in the men's game, as it is also in the women's now. I mean, I played mixed doubles yesterday. It was fun. I was able to return some of their serves. For me, it's never been a factor, whether it's slow or fast or whatever. No, never think about it.

Q. Sandrine Testud finished up her match in 41 minutes, which seemed pretty fast, until you played yours. Are you looking forward to playing her?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, it's like when I saw the draw, at first I'm like, "Okay, Sandrine again, fourth round, we'll see what happens until then." I think it's good to get a good match under your belt. I had very good matches so far. I just play very good. But someone who you know, you can compare yourself where you are, where I'm standing at right now.

Q. Do you feel if you don't win a Grand Slam this year, will you still have a successful year? How do you evaluate your year then?

MARTINA HINGIS: It's like so far in the last two years, I mean, it's always been four different champions. You know, I take my chance here. We'll see what happens along the way. I'm just happy to be able to play great tennis right now, you know, round by round. It will be great definitely to win a Grand Slam right here. This is my chance. If it doesn't happen, there are many more to come hopefully.

Q. How do you avoid not thinking about Venus, playing Venus in the semifinals?

MARTINA HINGIS: It's like another two rounds to go. I watch her, you know, when she plays. I played her, obviously, before. I know quite well what her game is. She maybe improved in some of the parts of her game. Just have to play mine. I mean, don't get too intimidated, play whatever I've been doing so far.

Q. But you're watching her when she's playing here a little bit?

MARTINA HINGIS: On TV, you watch a few points, a few games.

Q. What are you seeing? Anything different?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I watched that match a little bit when she, you know, played against Sidot. She was playing very well. But I think you just have to take your chance whenever you did. Both Serena and Venus, they have little bit sometimes their, you know, like concentration weaknesses, I think, in their game. She said herself when she gets into the big matches, she tends to be better. Until then, I have to get there, too.

Q. Bjorn Borg is quoted in a Swedish newspaper today saying that even though he enjoys women's tennis a lot, he would at the age of 44 still easily beat you or any of the other top women players. How do you respond to that?

MARTINA HINGIS: I don't know what to say. I haven't seen him play so far. I mean, I saw him playing in the veterans. I don't know how his game is right now. I don't know if you can compare these two worlds. I mean, it's different tennis. I don't know.

Q. You said you did see him play in the veterans?

MARTINA HINGIS: Yes, sometimes you see.

Q. What do you think when you watch him play? Do you think, "This guy can blow me off the court"?

MARTINA HINGIS: I don't think so (laughter).

Q. So you think, what, you played well, you could compete with him okay?

MARTINA HINGIS: I mean, I'm playing on the women's tour. I'm playing girls. I don't have to necessary play. Maybe in an exhibition, it would be fun. You don't know what happens. I wouldn't want to necessarily go out there and play Bjorn Borg, even though he's a legend. Now I focus on my things. This is what I got to do, not playing somebody who has achieved everything. I don't think it's necessary to say things like this.

Q. McEnroe said he thought any player on the senior tour, or any good college player, could beat the top women players. Do you think that's ludicrous?

MARTINA HINGIS: I mean, everybody will speak up his mind, he can say whatever he wants. I think what Venus said, it's never ever really going to get to that point to compare. I mean, I could say something. It's like kindergarten a little bit.

Q. Why do you think that the men feel they need to issue these challenges for the women players?

MARTINA HINGIS: I don't know. I mean, vain probably.

Q. Vanity?

MARTINA HINGIS: It's men. I don't know, sometimes (laughter).

Q. Do you think they're jealous of your popularity right now?

MARTINA HINGIS: He's a commentator. I think it's totally different from what he's playing down, what he was before. It's funny to me to read about this and to even talk about it because it's just so unnecessary, I think.

Q. For people who only see you playing once a year, twice a year, how would you say you're a different or better player this year than you were last year or two years ago? What specific things do you do better now than you did a year ago?

MARTINA HINGIS: I think I improve on my game overall. I mean, to come in, to take the ball early, as quick as I can, the serve. You know, when I'm serving well, like today, which is almost a perfect match. Just concentration. It's a lot of mental out there. If you feel good about yourself, you can achieve much more than when you don't feel that good.

Q. On a day like this when you play for 40 minutes, do you feel like you should go out there and hit some more balls? Does it hurt your rhythm that you played such a brief match?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I played some -- I played like 45 minutes to warm up myself. I had this great match, so I don't want to go out there and screw it up (laughter). No, I mean, I played a lot now in the last few days. It's nice to have an easy day today. Just going to have a massage, just take it easy. So far it's been very hectic, three, four days now.

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