Martina Hingis 2002 US Open 3rd-Round Interview ( Sports - Women's Tennis )

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USTA 2002 US Open at Flushing Meadows, New York, on Saturday, August 31, 2002
s9 Martina Hingis defeated #34 Amanda Coetzer 6-3, 6-4

MODERATOR: Questions for Martina.

Q. How do you feel about how you're playing?

MARTINA HINGIS: A lot better. You know, I think like if I wouldn't play the way I played today, you know, hanging in those long rallies, I probably would have had a lot of trouble against her. But, yeah, I was like trying always to be pressing and be on top. Once she made me running, I got into trouble. Yeah, I'm pretty pleased with today's match.

Q. Could you get the confidence more and more by age much?

MARTINA HINGIS: Sure. Every time you go out there, you know you can handle the opponent. I feel like every time physically and mentally I'm improving, last longer. Yeah, everything starts coming together.

Q. Over the last two years you made the semifinals. This year coming off an injury, can you compare how you felt then as compared to how you feel now?

MARTINA HINGIS: It's like having two surgeries in less than 10 months, it definitely toughens you up in a way. You learn to be patient. You know if this tournament doesn't work out as you probably set the goal. But right now I'm not in a hurry. You learn to be patient, just try to do the best you can at this moment. You just try to get better in the next few weeks, month. Right now I'm looking almost into the indoor season, then into next year. You have plenty of time.

Q. Would you say realistically you're not a contender for the title simply because you haven't got the matches?

MARTINA HINGIS: Every day passing by, I feel like I'm improving, better every match. I think I played pretty good today. It's like those balls, you have long rallies, it's hard to make the point, it's hard to kill the point. With her, she's a very speedy player. She always gets the shots which sometimes would be a winner, but then she has nothing really to hurt me with. That's kind of nice. It was a good test today.

Q. Do you think you can win this title this week?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, that's going to be a harder task. But definitely I'm not counting it out. You always have hopes. As a top player, always want to look forward to the next match and give the best.

Q. Is that frustrating for you?

MARTINA HINGIS: You've got to be realistic. I just came off surgery. I played a couple events, made quarterfinals. Maybe I wish I had done better there. I feel like I learn from the last two weeks, already playing a lot better here. But still there is a lot I have to catch up with. We'll see.

Q. Can you look ahead to Monica a little bit?

MARTINA HINGIS: Yeah, I watched her matches, especially against Schwartz. That was a close one. I mean, it was almost like my first.

Q. Today.

MARTINA HINGIS: I watched it until 6-1, 5-1. I was like, "That's going to be over in a minute." I don't know what happened later. It's good. She's going to be tired.

Q. Were you surprised she had so much trouble with Schwartz?

MARTINA HINGIS: I know that she lost to her in Fed Cup. It's probably not her favorite opponent. You know, she came out of that, won it. That's all that counts at the end.

Q. Whose confidence is higher now, yours or Monica's?

MARTINA HINGIS: I don't know. We'll see in the match.

Q. How is your level compared to Australia, before the surgeries? Anywhere close to it? Is it going to take a while?

MARTINA HINGIS: I think I have to -- I don't feel like at this point it's where I was in Australia. Maybe I'm similar, but the game has even gotten better. It's hard to say right now. The sisters have been playing very well. If you want to beat one of them, you really have to definitely step it up. There's still a few things I have to work on, especially the physical part. I have to maintain the routine, just work on that.

Q. The doctor having said at the beginning stuff about whether you were going to play, is there a feeling in your head of, "I can't believe that I'm even here," just because of everything you went through, that you're already back and playing?

MARTINA HINGIS: Yeah. In a way, I think I almost rushed it. I just missed the competition. I thought I was there where I was supposed to be to play a tournament. I won the first couple matches. But it takes me a lot longer to recover right now than I thought it would. But with a Grand Slam, that's perfect. You always have a day off. My doctor is also here, so I do a lot of like exercises, rehab, massage, all these things to get me going for the next one.

Q. Why are you playing doubles if there was any question physically of your ability?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I thought I could, you know, always like one day doubles, one day singles instead of almost practicing. I mean, you wouldn't think I would have a schedule like today. But it can happen. We kind of thought like, "Okay, give it a try, see how that goes." I felt like, yeah, I'm ready, for this tournament I would be ready.

Q. Are you in any pain right now?

MARTINA HINGIS: No, I'm not.

Q. When you were out, how much of the Saturday night Arthur Ashe Stadium atmosphere did you miss? How much did that inspire you to come back?

MARTINA HINGIS: A lot. I've been watching the tennis, even if I wasn't playing, competing. You just miss it, to have the routine, the discipline, to practice. Like two months, I had no plan, no schedule. I was almost going crazy. You like it for a few weeks, but then you miss that, just the competition.

Q. Did you miss the big crowds at all, playing in front of big crowds?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, you miss everything, the whole atmosphere of everything, definitely cheered on, applause. But that kind of came the last in my mind. I was happy to start practicing and start feeling better, then that would come along with it.

Q. Since they've started playing evening sessions at the US Open, this is the first time it's been an all-women's schedule, no men. What do you think that says about the women's game today?

MARTINA HINGIS: In a way, I think it's great. It just got me that I have to play singles and doubles. I don't love that.

Match Statistics from USOpen.org

Amanda Coetzer(RSA) 3 4
Martina Hingis(SUI) 6 6
Elapsed Time by Set: 25 49
Match Summary
Coetzer (RSA) Hingis (SUI)
1st Serve % 43 of 59 = 73 % 44 of 58 = 76 %
Aces 0 2
Double Faults 0 0
Unforced Errors 28 19
Winning % on 1st Serve 24 of 43 = 56 % 23 of 44 = 52 %
Winning % on 2nd Serve 4 of 16 = 25 % 10 of 14 = 71 %
Winners (Including Service) 18 18
Break Point Conversions 3 of 5 = 60 % 5 of 8 = 63 %
Net Approaches 13 of 19 = 68 % 12 of 20 = 60 %
Total Points Won 53 64
Fastest Serve 90 MPH 100 MPH
Average 1st Serve Speed 80 MPH 84 MPH
Average 2nd Serve Speed 67 MPH 67 MPH

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