Martina Hingis, the Swiss tennis star who won her first grand slam title before she turned 16, will enter the International Hall of Fame this year. About eight months after that first Wimbledon victory (in women’s doubles), she became the No. 1 ranked singles player in the world. It was a position she would occupy for a cumulative total of more than four years.
Hingis is sometimes seen as the last player, along with Justine Henin, of her size to dominate in a sport where success has increasingly required unusual size, strength and power. Though she stood 5′ 7″ and weighed more than 120 lbs, she looked slight in late career sharing the court with the Williams’ sisters (6′ 1″; 5′ 11″), Maria Sharapova (6′ 2″), Monica Seles (5′ 10″), Kim Clijsters (5′ 9″) and many of the other power players of the new era. The “Swiss Miss” was a joy to watch, possessing an astonishing repertoire of shots and an abundance of style. Before she was through–which was early–she’d won five grand slam singles titles, ten in doubles and $20 million.