Martina Hingis 2000 Wimbledon 4th-Round Interview ( Sports - Women's Tennis )  

2000 The Championships at Wimbledon, England, on Monday, July 3, 2000
Martina Hingis defeated Anke Huber, 6-1, 6-2

An Interview With MARTINA HINGIS

Q. Were you surprised by the score today?

MARTINA HINGIS: No. I mean, I was playing well. I wouldn't pressure her all the time. Towards the end of the second set when I had the match point already, she can swing the ball so hard. I was just trying to, you know, get everything back and play point by point and just stay aggressive.

Q. So many of your matches have gone to three sets. We were expecting another today.

MARTINA HINGIS: Not the last two ones. I remember I played her US Open, and that was like 2-2. The last one in Hamburg, 3-2. The last couple matches, I play very well against her. Her game suits me.

Q. You're going to play Venus now. What are your thoughts on that?

MARTINA HINGIS: We'll see tomorrow. We play tomorrow?

MODERATOR: You do play tomorrow.

Q. Different kind of game?

MARTINA HINGIS: No, I don't think it's that different. So far I had pretty much all of the girls who are kind of hard-hitting, like the pace. But the first one, Montolio, but that was like warm-up. Now I think they play very well so far, and we'll just see. I mean, so did I. Tomorrow's going to be definitely a good game, yeah.

Q. The last time they were both in a Grand Slam, you had to play one after the other. Now you're in that position again. Do you think the draw doesn't like you or something?

MARTINA HINGIS: I mean, it didn't happen at the Australian Open, didn't happen at the French. There I lost against other players. No, I mean, just you have to play whoever is on the other side. I was able to beat Venus. So far I lost all the time against the second one when I had to play them both. But I always had to play them consecutive days. That's very hard. You have a three-setter. You're happy you made it through. Then the next day, the other one is waiting. Now, hopefully, if I would beat one, I got another day off. That makes a difference.

Q. Does it feel like a monster with two heads?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, you know, I feel good, I feel confident. As I said, you have to play against whoever is on the other side. Definitely they're not easy. But anything is possible.

Q. Do you think in the women's game on grass, it really is much closer to a hard court game than, say, the men's game is?

MARTINA HINGIS: The Williamses, they serve hard. I mean, they get a lot of free points off their serves. You know, I think because we just like to return also, we're more defensive than the guys are that just attack, aggressive. Whatever happens, they just go it for it. But the girls are more like, they just see first what happens, then they are aggressive. On grass, the serve is not that important as in the guy's game. You just get into a rally. Whoever is better there, it's -- I think on grass, also once you take over the rally, it's almost impossible to kind of fight back.

Q. You made it sound like this match is probably going to unfold like the US Open match you had with her.

MARTINA HINGIS: Who knows? I can't answer until we play tomorrow.

Q. If I understood you correctly, there have been several occasions when you've had to play them back-to-back with a day of rest.

MARTINA HINGIS: Without a day of rest.

Q. After the US Open, what other ones were recent?

MARTINA HINGIS: I think Key Biscayne. The last one was the US Open, but no other recent ones. Either one or the other played. They never played together at the same tournaments.

Q. Would you say you're going to have shorter rallies probably on grass than you did on hard courts with Venus? Does that favour her or does that favour you?

MARTINA HINGIS: I don't know. It's like you can't go by strategy or statistics. We'll see.

Q. Talk about how you will play.

MARTINA HINGIS: What do you think?

Q. You're more important than I am.

MARTINA HINGIS: I have no idea.

Q. Talk about how you're going to play her on grass rather than hard courts. Do you take a different strategy in the match because you can't bring her from side-to-side as much?

MARTINA HINGIS: I think any shot is important you get back on grass. Every bounce is just different. Anything can happen. Hard court is just more regular, the same timing over and over. Here on grass, I think serve is very important to keep the other one unbalanced, take it shot by shot.

Q. She's been at the net quite a lot in this tournament. Would you say you're a player who would rather have a target at the net and pass rather than have somebody come to the net and put pressure on you?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, sometimes you just have to try to be quicker at the net than your opponent. That's probably the case against Venus because she's, you know, very tall, she's got a lot of reach. I like targets. I mean, I was able to win this tournament against Novotna in '97. I liked playing somebody who came in. I think it doesn't make such a big difference whether it's on grass or any other surface. I just like playing here. Just if you're confident, it's more mental I think in the women's game than in the guy's.

Q. Both Williams sisters have tended to have an intimidating presence on court over their opponents. Is that ever affecting you? If so, which is the more intimidating?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I don't think it affected me so far because I was able to, you know, beat especially Venus when it was really important, at the Grand Slams. I always had the edge over them. But definitely Serena, you know, because she beat me US Open, so it's more even with her.

Q. Has the challenge that they have posed in recent years forced you to change or adapt your game?

MARTINA HINGIS: Definitely. I mean, they came with a new game into women's tennis, a lot more power, a lot more physical abilities. Everybody had to, you know, improve on their physical abilities, and so did I have to. Just work out more, hit the ball harder basically. That's what it meant.

Q. How do you assess your form now? You're well into the second week, approaching the quarterfinal. Do you feel quite good?

MARTINA HINGIS: I feel very good. I think I can be very, you know, happy about the game I played so far. Now the tournament begins.

Q. Is the reason why you've had such good success against Venus is because her forehand isn't as strong as, say, Mary or Lindsay or Serena?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, maybe because I was also able to, you know, step it up when it was a crucial time, just not make an easy error as they probably would do in the past, or Venus did. I haven't played them in a while, so I just can't tell how it's going to be tomorrow. Just hard to say.

Q. Do you like these big-occasion matches?

MARTINA HINGIS: Oh, I mean, that's what you do it for. I mean, I think we're going to play on Centre Court. You know, it's just a great occasion, yeah. It's a great honor to be out there on Centre Court of Wimbledon playing Williams, I mean, one of the best players in the world right now.

Q. The tabloid coverage of the tournament, have they been fair to you over the years or have you been asked some pretty weird stuff?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I haven't read like daily what came out. I mean, from what I can see how the fans are towards me, I like it very much. I think they're honest to me. It's nice. The crowd has been very nice to me so far.

Q. Do you read the papers, what they say about you?

MARTINA HINGIS: Why, what do they say? Well, I do read it sometimes, yeah, but I don't know if I read like everything good and bad about me. But Mario goes almost like daily to the stores and buys some of the papers.

Q. The spin doctors will say that the women's tour is tremendously deep. The fact is, once you get past you, the Williams sisters, Lindsay Davenport, Monica, there's a huge drop-off.

MARTINA HINGIS: You forgot Mary. She won the French.

Q. There's still a big drop-off between the first-week and the second-week opponents that you face. Does that make it difficult for you going into the second week to really assess how good your form is before you start playing the top players?

MARTINA HINGIS: No, because I think I was very consistent so far throughout all my matches. Now I think I gradually got better. I didn't really have an up-and-down in any of my matches, so that feels very good. I think the second round match against Yi was very good. The other ones, I was just very steady, high standard of my game. Hopefully it's going to be up against Venus tomorrow.

Q. Have you got another level you can go to? Have you been really tested yet?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I didn't like the second round match at all. I mean, she played very well. I had to fight for every point I played. It was just a very good win there playing second round on Centre. I think that was a pretty good test. After that, I just didn't let anybody a chance to come back into the game. I was serving very well and played just very consistent. If it's going to be enough tomorrow, time will tell. You know, it will show.

Q. Have you found a solution with your mother since she was banned with the locker rooms so she can shower?

MARTINA HINGIS: Well, I practise at Aorangi. There are many other mothers or coaches or whoever, they can go in there.

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