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Martina Hingis is a former World No. 1 professional tennis player who currently plays in World Team Tennis.
She won five Grand Slam singles titles (three Australian Open, one Wimbledon, and one U.S. Open). She also won nine Grand Slam women's doubles titles, winning a calendar year Grand Slam in 1998, and one Grand Slam mixed doubles title. Martina spent a total of 209 weeks as World No. 1, the fourth most in history.
Hingis set a series of "youngest-ever" records, including being the youngest woman to win a Grand Slam event. She was 15 years, nine months old when she won the women's doubles at Wimbledon with Helena Sukova. Martina won her first singles Grand Slam in 1997, the Australian Open.
A native of Slovakia when it was part of the former Czechoslovakia, Hingis moved to Switzerland as child with her mother and coach, Melanie Molitor, who gave Martina a sawed-off racket at age 2.
"Since I was in her stomach, she was thinking I was going to be a great tennis player," Martina told Sports Illustrated.
Despite her thin, girlish build _ at the time, she was barely 115 pounds _ Hingis combined court quickness with brilliant shot-making to rise to the top of the WTA rankings. Martina's trademark ass wiggle and tiny tits, often braless with pokies, also appealed to some fans.
"Martina Hingis won’t bowl you over with a gargantuan chest, but she does proudly heft her small grapefruits by holding them high, tight, and quite frequently hard," is how one blog put it, generously upgrading Martina from oranges.
But her juvenile, often contemptuous remarks about other players made Hingis less popular in the locker room.
At the 1999 Australian Open, Hingis referred to her lesbian opponent Amélie Mauresmo as "half a man." She said Venus and Serena Williams "have big mouths," and later mocked their complaints that they were subjected to racism. "Being black only helps them," she insisted. When champion Steffi Graf temporarily withdrew from the WTA tour because of injury in 1998, Hingis said, "She's old now. Her time has passed." And Martina even dropped her doubles partner, Jana Novotná, because "she's old and slow."
So there was a certain amount of schadenfreude when ligament injuries in both ankles forced Martina herself to withdraw temporarily from professional tennis in 2002 at the age of 22. In February 2003, Hingis announced her first retirement.
"I want to play tennis only for fun and concentrate more on horse riding and finish my studies," she said at the time.
But in the summer of 2005, she used the WTT series of abbreviated matches as a springboard to return to the women's tour that November. Martina combined with Mahesh Bhupathi to win the Australian Open mixed doubles title in 2006.
After several surgeries and long recuperations, Hingis returned to the WTA tour in 2006. She then climbed to World No. 6 and won three singles titles. Martina lost in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open in 2007. But a recurring hip injury caused her to withdraw from the French Open, the only major singles title she has never won. Marina then lost in the third round at both Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.
On November 1, 2007, Hingis admitted she was under investigation for cocaine usage and announced another retirement. But Martina maintained her innocence.
"I have tested positive but I have never taken drugs and I feel 100 percent innocent," she said. "I would personally be terrified of taking drugs. When I was informed [about the test] I was shocked and appalled." Martina said she would not appeal her two-year ban, handed down by the WTA in January 2008 but backdated yo October 2007, because the process could take years.
The drug test results were released to Hingis after her third round loss to Laura Granville at Wimbledon, with both "A" and "B" urine samples failing the tests. Hingis then underwent a private drug test on a hair sample, which came back negative.
Nevertheless, Martina's latest "retirement" is far from complete. She played an exhibition in 2008 and began increasing her match appearances in 2010, when her ban was over. In between, she competed on the BBC's celebrity dance show, "Strictly Come Dancing," but was the first contestant bounced. She also was thrown and nearly trampled in a show riding competition. As it turns out, tennis is her sport.
After appearing in tennis events organised by her management company, Northern Vision, Martina did not rejoin the WTA tour. But she returned to World Team Tennis for both the 2010 and 2011 seasons.
In between, Hingis pulled another surprise by marrying French show jumper Thibault Hutin in a private ceremony in Paris. Martina met Hutin, six years her junior, at a show-jumping competition in St. Tropez earlier in the year, shortly after breaking off her long-time engagement to Swiss attorney Andreas Bieri.
In August 2011, Martina denied that she had agreed to play mixed doubles with fellow Swiss star Roger Federer at the 2012 Olympics. True to form, though, her denials left open the possibility. "There have definitely been a few talks," Hingis told the Los Angeles Times.
To play in the Olympics, Hingis likely would have to rejoin the WTA tour first. She told the newspaper that she would need more training to build stamina beyond that required for short WTT sets. But at the end of the 2011 WTT season, a very thin and fit-looking Martina did outpoint Serena Williams in a set.
Martina Hingis on the Web
Daily Bagel: Martina Navratilova says Roger Federer should keep ... Video: The WTA looks back on feat that probably will never be matched — Martina Hingis winning a Grand Slam at just 16 years old. • From TennisNow, 10 Questions with Martina Navratilova. Her thoughts on any whispers of ...
Martina Hingis accused of assaulting estranged husband - Mid-Day Former tennis star Martina Hingis' estranged husband, who had earlier in the year made headlines by accusing her of being a serial cheater, has now claimed that Hingis, her mother and mother's boyfriend beat him up.