Sunday, August 20, 2006

Roger Federer: ballboy at Martina's match!

Federer was ballboy when Hingis played!
Web posted at: 8/20/2006 1:59:27
Source ::: The Peninsula

MONTREAL • Rumour has it that tennis legend Ivan Lendl was once Martina Navratilova’s ballboy. The truth in this claim is open to debate. However, there is no need to argue the authenticity of this statement — that world number one Roger Federer (pictured right) served as a ballboy in one of the matches involving Swiss great Martina Hingis many years ago!

This startling revelation came from Hingis after her match yesterday.

Hingis, who enjoys iconic status in her country following famous wins during her illustrious career, yesterday paid glowing tributes to compatriot Federer and his unchallenged supremacy on the men’s Tour, before cheekily revealing that he was her ballboy nearly a decade ago.

“We never played together during our younger days because I was always busy playing with girls and boys three years older than me when I was 14 or 15. However, I do remember that he was my ballboy at one of the Basel tournaments (laughs). That was funny,” Hingis said when asked about playing against or with Federer during their younger days.

“The only time we played together was at the Hopman Cup a few years ago. We won when we played together. He was a great partner,” the Swiss added. Hingis said she admires playing tactics of Federer – who has captured eight Grand Slam titles so far.

“I didn’t see him play against Andy Murray the other day, when he lost. But I get to see him play fairly often. Whenever I switch on the TV, you see Roger playing. I love to see him play. He’s certainly at his best and has won many tournaments in recent times,” Hingis added.

When asked about her own form in the comeback season, the former world number one said: “I am not tired at all. I came back because I was looking forward to the challenge on the court. I mean what more do you want? Having the crowd support like I had yesterday was great. The only time I felt bad this season was when I lost at Wimbledon. I felt that was an unnecessary loss.”

To a pointed query, the five-time Grand Slam winner said: “Watch out for players like (Anna) Chakvetadze (of Russia). She is the one to watch in the future. Maybe Shahar Peer (of Israel) also. These are the two players whom you will see often in the future. I feel there are a few young players who make the game exiting to watch.”


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