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Old 02-11-2003, 03:59 PM   #436
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Originally posted by Mrs. B
I didn't see his "hotdog" shot on tv cuz i opened it a bit late, but i saw some incredible shots, like when the audience was already cheering cuz Schlaken made a volley on the net and they thought it was already a point for Holland, but Roger was so quick and he got to the ball and put it across---awesome shot! he was also quick with some down the line forehand where you think he couldn't get it. I am forever amazed at his prowess and i have not seen him since Shanghai but i think he's improved even more...
Hi Mrs. B. et al!

I'm glad you think Rogi has improved since Shanghai!! That's a good sign!

Also, it's amazing that Micha managed to get stronger as the match went on and that he was mentally tough enough to win those TBs!! That is SO important!! Wow! How did he do it??? Let's hope he can continue his impressive tennis -- I still can't get over it... he's really gotten over a hurdle. Hackie must be on cloud 9!!! It's just so heartening for the Swissies, isn't it! Great team, great win, great weekend!! I love it!!

[now I want to go to Valencia to see ESP vs. CRO -- only if I win the lottery!!]



btw it was snowing like crazy an hour ago here... still very cold -- can't wait for spring... you must be adjusting to the climate change!!
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Old 02-11-2003, 05:07 PM   #437
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Martina Hingis says goodbye . . . . .

No answer to power game

With Martina Hingis consigning herself to the history books, she appears to have closed the chapter on grace and skill at the top of the women’s game. Power’s the game as James Buddell wonders what it would take for a player of the Swiss star’s ilk to ever dominate again.

The warning signs were always there. The teenaged Hingis took the money and ran à la Yevgeny Kafelnikov. She would reach the finals in every tournament she could find - hoarding singles and doubles trophies wherever they appeared.

Suddenly, after two consecutive years at the top, where Hingis had won five Grand Slam titles, Steffi Graf - suddenly enjoying a late flourish to her magnificent career – dispelled the Swiss Miss’ aura of invincibility in the Roland Garros final of June 1999.

On a disputed line call, Hingis came apart. Graf raised her arms victorious as the 18-year-old Hingis broke down in tears, while the Parisian court filled with a chorus of boos. This was the beginning of the end.

Ever since that day, nearly four years ago, the WTA tour has seen powerful American players rise to the forefront of Grand Slam play and in the world ranking lists.

From Lindsay Davenport and a resurgent Jennifer Capriati to the Williams sisters with their own ‘biff, bang wallop’ style of tennis, they hold the titles to the past 11 Grand Slam tournaments.

As a result, the women’s game now cries in desperation for variety. A Hingis type, who can place subtlety ahead of power. A Maria Bueno or Evonne Googlagong would be ideal.

Serena and Venus haven’t surprised us with their dominance. Their unremitting brutality may seem boring, but their father and coach Richard warned us, predicting the world’s top spots for his daughters.

Sadly only Kim Clijsters took note of his (not so) ‘arrogant’ claim.

To get an idea of the women’s game of the future, cue to the men’s tennis of ten years ago. Human cranes with booming serves like Goran Ivanisevic and Richard Krajicek were in their pomp. Since then, the rest of the competition has figured out what’s needed to counter raw power, none better than Andre Agassi. Today the field is more wide open than ever.

Strength in depth is therefore the key to a brighter future on the WTA tour, while the players Hingis are left behind or forced into a new era of athleticism and aggression.

For now Serena is Queen! While a new star burns bright, highlighting a game lost with Hingis’ retirement. A game, which CAN be recaptured! And you don’t need to spend hours bulking up at the gym.

The evolution of the men’s game has proven that crafty ground strokes and well-placed serves can neutralise power tennis.

But wait a minute. Isn’t that what Martina Hingis’ game was all about?


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Old 02-11-2003, 05:08 PM   #438
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Hingis revisited

Nagging injuries forced former world number one Martina Hingis to call it a day. Was it the foot and ankle pain? Or did the Swiss realise that today’s power game is too much for her? Gregory Lanzenberg looks back at what could be the last of a dying breed of champions.

At five-foot-seven, 130 pounds, Hingis was overshadowed by bigger, stronger opponents. But she used her greatest weapon - her mind - to compensate, wearing down heftier opponents and bending them into submission.

The Slovakian-born Hingis began playing at the age of two.

After her mother Melanie, a professional Czechoslovakian tennis player, divorced when Martina was 4, she remarried a Swiss computer salesman and relocated to the Zurich area. From her first tourney at 4, her mother would remain Martina’s only coach for the rest of her career.

Hingis turned pro at 14 and never looked back.

In 1997, she beat France's Mary Pierce in the Australian open final to become the youngest Grand Slam singles champion of the 20th century at the age of 16 years, three months. She would rise to the top three months later to become the youngest No. 1 at 16 years, six months and one day.

1997 would be the best year of her career as Hingis added the Wimbledon and U.S. Open crowns to her collection and became the first player since Steffi Graf to reach all four Grand Slam finals.

Only a knee injury sustained when she fell off her horse and causing a slight tear in her left knee ligament, prevented her from winning the French Open as she reached the final only to fall to Iva Majoli. Hingis completed that season with 13 tournament titles which was the best of any player in the 1990s.

Only Steffi Graf, Martina Navratilova, and Chris Evert have spent more weeks at number one than Hingis, whose five grand slams are on par with the tally of the current top woman in the game Serena Williams.

Fortunes turned however at Roland Garros in 1999. Three points away from victory in the final against the veteran Steffi Graf, Hingis lost her cool on a disputed line call. She crossed the net to the other side of the court to point to the spot where the ball had landed in breach of the game’s rules and edicate.

The crowd turned on her.

Hingis would never win a Grand Slam again.

First there was Venus. Then Lindsay Davenport. Sidelined for the final months of the 2001 season after October surgery to repair torn tendons in her right ankle, Hingis came back vigorously to score instant success in Sydney where she snapped a 13-month title drought to capture the championship.

Boosted by her victory, Hingis advanced to her sixth straight Australian Open final where she held a one-set, 4-0 lead over Jennifer Capriati. But defending champion Capriati turned in a timeless performance by fighting off four match points to stage a remarkable rally and capture her second consecutive Australian Open crown with a 4-6, 7-6, 6-2 triumph.

More ankle trouble followed before Martina’s announcement last week that she’d quit all serious training and was devoting herself to her studies.

For many, it’s a hard pill to swallow to see one of the game’s greats retired at age 22. Although you have to wonder if all that could change should the all-powerful Williams sisters decide in turn to call it a day.


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Old 02-11-2003, 05:13 PM   #439
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Retired at age 22

In an interview published Friday, former world number one Martina Hingis said for her a return to tennis was "unimaginable", but the 22-year old Swiss, hampered by an ankle injury, stopped short of making her retirement official.

In an interview with French newspaper L'Equipe, Hingis repeated that she was no longer able to do what was required to play top-level professional tennis.

"A return to competition is unimagineable. But there you go... it is finished. Life goes on."

Asked does this mean she'll never return, she stopped short of making it official: "More or less, yes that's the truth. In any case, it's the truth right now, that's for sure."

Only Steffi Graf, Martina Navratilova, and Chris Evert have spent more weeks at number one than the Slovakian-born Swiss, whose five grand slams are on par with the tally of the current top woman in the game Serena Williams.

She blames her premature exit on her bad ankle, which never fully recovered after a second operation in May of last year. Hingis blames her grueling schedule, but does not blame WTA organisers: "The difficulty in my case comes from the fact that I regularly played finals for five years on hardcourt surfaces against 10 tens, but also top 20 and 30 [players]."

Hingis tells l'Equipe that when she tried practicing with fellow Swiss players Patty Schnyder and Myriam Casanova - who's now coached by Martina's mother - she felt the pain.

Known as a player who wore down her rivals rather than power past them, Hingis was asked what she thought of the Williams sisters: "Who can rival them today? Outside of Kim Clijsters, I don't see who. Kim can do it because physically, she's fit, she has the talent, and she has the game for that."

Currently enrolled in a University-level program in Zurich, Hingis says she now aims to perfect her English skills and possibly study marketing.

"In tennis, I stay in contact with Anna Kournikova and Monica Seles. Regrets? No regrets at all. Tennis has given me so much, a magnificent life!"


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Old 02-11-2003, 05:13 PM   #440
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Hi Hackie! RogiFan!

No snow here, but it's still freezing, and the climate change makes me hibernate (and makes me hungry). I did go out for a walk and the fresh cold air felt good.

Funny how quiet Switzerland is after all that bustle in the Philippines--motorcycles buzzing around, cars & buses honking incessantly (they only honk here when it's a matter of life & death!), radios & tv's on and loud enough for the whole neighborhood to hear, plus the continuous karaoke singing! Talking about culture shock.

Yeah, wish it was spring already...(and i wouldn't mind winning the lotto, either!) looking forward to playing tennis outdoors again...
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Old 02-11-2003, 05:16 PM   #441
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Originally posted by RogiFan
Also, it's amazing that Micha managed to get stronger as the match went on and that he was mentally tough enough to win those TBs!! That is SO important!! Wow! How did he do it??? Let's hope he can continue his impressive tennis -- I still can't get over it... he's really gotten over a hurdle. Hackie must be on cloud 9!!! It's just so heartening for the Swissies, isn't it! Great team, great win, great weekend!! I love it!!

Hehe, indeed, I'm still over the moon even three days after the match Michel has always had the game to do well and despite what he says, its his mind that has betrayed him. He took those tiebreaks from Agassihole last year at Indian Wells, so I never doubted he could win tiebreaks again -- its just getting there that can be the problem for him. Holding serve and breaking his opponents' -- two major components.

I certainly hope he can continue at this pace!! I'd really love to see him doing well on the circuit, take that maiden title!! I think it would give him a huge boost
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Old 02-11-2003, 05:20 PM   #442
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Mrs. B!

Totally know what you mean by hibernate. Sometimes I just don't want to leave my nice, warm bed and I stay indoors as much as I can, even though I love the snow. LOL at the hungry part -- I bought some Swiss chocolate to celebrate the win and have only eaten a little bit of it, though I could probably finish it off in one sitting! It's so cold I don't want to drink water (because drinking water just makes me feel colder) so my huge appetite has returned

But I have been getting most friendly with my tea this winter, and I love it

The Phillipines sound like a crazy, bustling place!! I think it'd be too much for me, but I'm very glad you enjoyed your winter migration!
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Old 02-11-2003, 05:27 PM   #443
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Hackie, drinking water gives me gas pains. lol. But i do drink lots of tea. and i just devoured some chocolates...

btw., i brought some sweet, luscious mangoes from Cebu, the best in the whole wide world!

Re: Martina. I'll never forget how she blew that FO final against Graf, going to the other side to complain a line call. Silly girl!
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Old 02-11-2003, 05:41 PM   #444
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I don't think I've ever had mango. Not sure if I'd like it or not . . .

A few weeks ago we discussed our favorite kinds of tea in the Juan Carlos chat thread My favorite is blackcurrant, and Prince of Wales (both by Twinings). Layla said she drinks vanilla tea, which sounds quite divine!

And you tempt me . . . . I have Lindt & Toblerone here . . .

Re: Martina, well, I never liked her but finally have developed an appreication for her (Steffi is my all-time favorite player). I'm sorry I won't get to see her play now that I am rather indifferent. She was always so arrogant when she was younger!! I'll never forget when she won Wimbly over Steffi (97 I think it was) -- I just wanted to slap her, wipe that grin off her face!

But she is a fellow Swiss player so I felt we should rightly ackowledge her retirement.
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Old 02-11-2003, 05:58 PM   #445
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I didn't like her when she was in her 'prime' cuz i too found her quite arrogant, and she was tacky with some of her interviews, but i think she learned her lesson after that FO final, then i saw her play in Zürich against Capriati (it was the first time i saw her play live) and i started to appreciate her game & talent. But you're right, as a Swiss we should acknowledge her 'retirement'.

Back to the teas. I'm making one right now, and i'm settling for something herbal from the Alps, with honey. I have lots of faves and one of them is the Tazo Chai tea, sold at Starbucks. It's black tea spiced with cinnamon, ginger, black pepper, cardamon, cloves & star anise. It's just so good, with a little milk and sugar.
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Old 02-11-2003, 06:46 PM   #446
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Don't think I've forgotten this post, Mrs. B -- just can't respond now.

See you later
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Old 02-11-2003, 06:56 PM   #447
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...and i'm doing my ironing while watching tv. guess it's bedtime after that, so catch u later!

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Old 02-11-2003, 06:56 PM   #448
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Hi again!

Snow has stopped but still bitterly cold out there!! I've been drinking lots of tea and hot chocolate lately, just to keep myself warm!

Interesting culture contrast betw SUI and PHIL, Mrs. B.! Wow! And when I first went to France I thought that was culture shock! Actually it was, for me at the time! And not because of language either!

Re: Hingis, I have to say I never really liked her, esp at that RG when Steffi beat her [1st time I wanted Steffi to win because she was always getting in Arantxa's way -- who was my fave at the time!] -- I thought Hingis was a spoiled brat and guileless to say the least!

I never really appreciated her incredible talent... the only thing I liked about her was the fact that she was small of stature yet able to win slams. Retiring at 22 is a tragedy... for women's tennis and for women like her! At least her game was graceful and not that pounding heavyhitting ace-slinging power game. I am interested to know what her peers think...

I don't know about her taking uni-level courses though... she doesn't strike me as very intelligent [really she s have kept her mouth shut more often]... but she has a plan, which is essential for her young age! All the best to her!

I think Rogi learned a lot from her -- good for him!

Mrs. B. -- hibernation! I like that -- I s be doing that since I have very little work at the moment.
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Old 02-11-2003, 09:36 PM   #449
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mrs. B
Back to the teas. I'm making one right now, and i'm settling for something herbal from the Alps, with honey. I have lots of faves and one of them is the Tazo Chai tea, sold at Starbucks. It's black tea spiced with cinnamon, ginger, black pepper, cardamon, cloves & star anise. It's just so good, with a little milk and sugar.
Sorry I missed you, Mrs. B

I've never been one for herbal tea, I definitely think its an acquired taste. I like "bland" tea, I guess, since I named off my faves before -- just don't like spicy drinks. Really, fruit is wild enough for me I just like the Twinings selection. I don't like American tea -- Lipton or any of those brands -- because it just isn't good hot, and I've never had a taste for iced tea.

Guess I'm just a weakling


Michel lost his first round doubles match today, 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 to Ljubicic and Tarango. Ljubicic is also coming down from an all-time DC high, and he and Roger are playing tomorrow So I hope Rogi can get through that. Michel is playing Karol Kucera, so I hope his disappointment from today's match doesn't get in the way.
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Old 02-12-2003, 03:13 AM   #450
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Mikaelian applies for compensation from Swiss Federation
2003-02-10 15:32:51 GMT (Reuters)

BIEL, Switzerland, Feb 10 (Reuters) - Swiss teenager Marie-Gaianeh Mikaelian has applied for compensation from the Swiss Tennis Federation for her private coaching despite rejecting the chance to attend the national centre, the federation said in a statement on Monday.

Mikaelian, 18, chose to be coached by her father Georges rather than attend the Swiss national tennis centre in Biel.

But Mikaelian is seeking remuneration for her tennis education from the Swiss Tennis Federation after moving into the Fed Cup frame.

"The Mikaelian family selected private training for Marie-Gaianeh and rejected the qualities of Swiss tennis," the statement read.

"The promotion of Swiss players in the sport takes place in framework of the federation in the national centre in Biel and not in the form of financing private training.

"For the use of the best players in the national team individual (financial) services are offered. We made an offer in writing to the family at the beginning of the year, but the appropriate discussions (with Mikaelian) never happened."

Switzerland want to call Mikaelian into their Fed Cup team, and president Christine Ungricht admitted her participation will come down to a compromise.

"Swiss tennis president Christine Ungricht is convinced after the recent occurrences that a participation of Marie in the Fed Cup is a purely financial question," the statement added.

Mikaelian, now Swiss number three behind Patty Schnyder and Martina Hingis, is ranked 35th in the world. She claimed her only WTA Tour title in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, last year.
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