Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Former World No.1 Hingis makes comeback after six-year absence

August 1, 2013 -- Updated 1133 GMT (1933 HKT)
Martina Hingis played her first WTA match since 2007 2007 at the Southern California Open alongside Daniela Hantuchova.
Martina Hingis played her first WTA match since 2007 2007 at the Southern California Open alongside Daniela Hantuchova.
  • Martina Hingis has returned to competitive action for the first time since 2007
  • Five time grand slam winner played at the Southern California Open
  • Played alongside Slovakia's Daniela Hantuchova in 6-1 6-1 victory
  • Says she has no intention of returning to singles action

(CNN) -- Martina Hingis is back -- but the five-time grand slam winner says she has no plans to take on the world's best any time soon.

The 32-year-old ended her six-year absence from competitive WTA action by playing doubles alongside Slovakia's Daniela Hantuchova at the Southern California Open Wednesday.

Hingis, who retired for the second time in 2007, spent 209 weeks as the world's top-ranked player after bursting onto the scene as a teenager.

Read: Injury hits Sharapova's U.S. Open preparations

Japan's 'rock star' tennis pro
Tennis baby takes Internet by storm
Andy Murray's historic Wimbledon win

The Swiss ace has already confirmed that she will play alongside Hantuchova at the U.S. Open and enjoyed a winning start following a 6-1 6-1 victory over Germany's Julia Goerges and Croatian Darija Jurak.

But Hingis ruled out any thoughts of a comeback on the singles tour -- insisting that it's doubles or nothing.

Read: Doubles proves a hard sell

"Not singles, no," she told reporters after being asked if she wanted to return to the women's circuit.

"It's a completely different world. Even World Team Tennis (WTT) now, it's brutal, it's only one set but still the next day you wake up, and you have to put so much more effort into it."

Hingis has spent the past few months playing World Team Tennis on a regular basis and helped the Washington Kastles win the WTT league title in July.

But her return to WTA action has given her a new lease of life and an extra buzz.

"It was awesome," Hingis told the WTA official website.

"It took Daniela a lot of courage and inspiration to kind of dig me out of the grave, but I'm really happy to have a partner like her, it makes it so much easier. I was nervous going into the match, but she was really solid out there, and that gave me so much more confidence.

Andy Murray 'held his grit'
Murray inspired by friend's cancer fight
Monica Seles is now a novelist

"After the first set it was pure pleasure."

Hingis first emerged as a star in the making at the age of 15 when she partnered Helena Sukova to win a grand slam doubles crown.

The following year she became the youngest ever singles winner at the age of 16 years and three months at the Australian Open before becoming the youngest woman to become the World No.1.

Hingis, who also won nine grand slam doubles titles, was forced to retire at the age of 22 in 2003 following a struggle with injury problems.

She returned to action in 2005 but her comeback was cut short in 2007 when it was divulged that she had tested positive for a metabolite of cocaine after her third round loss at Wimbledon six years ago.

Hingis maintained her innocence, but was banned for two years by the International Tennis Federation.

Fast forward to the present day and Hingis is more philosophical about her tennis having spent years in the wilderness.

"When you're 17 everything seems so easy, but now I'm almost twice the age," she added.

"I wouldn't want to come out and play one or two matches and then lose third round, that's not my type of personality.

"I feel pretty good. We'll see how it goes this summer.

"Obviously I wouldn't put myself in this position if I didn't feel like I could compete at this level."

Part of complete coverage on
December 16, 2014 -- Updated 1208 GMT (2008 HKT)
Rafael Nadal of Spain watches the ball in his match against Martin Klizan of Slovakia during during day seven of the China Open at the National Tennis Center on October 3, 2014 in Beijing, China.
Rafael Nadal's body might be giving him a few problems, but his mind remains as strong as ever. Will the Spaniard add to his haul of 14 grand slam titles?
November 24, 2014 -- Updated 1342 GMT (2142 HKT)
A year that began in uncertainty for Roger Federer ended with a historic title for the 17-time grand slam champion and his country.
November 27, 2014 -- Updated 1716 GMT (0116 HKT)
The Scot has served up a few changes to his support team in 2014 but there's one person who isn't going anywhere -- his new fiancée Kim Sears.
September 11, 2014 -- Updated 1248 GMT (2048 HKT)
French Tennis player Rene Lacoste, one of France's 'Four Musketeers' who won the Davis Cup in 1932, at Wimbledon. He is wearing his embroidered crocodile motif. Original Publication: People Disc - HH0434 (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)
His distinctive crocodile logo is seen on clothing all over the world, but Rene Lacoste also left a lasting legacy in the development of tennis.
September 9, 2014 -- Updated 0636 GMT (1436 HKT)
Marin Cilic follows in the footsteps of his coach Goran Ivanicevic by claiming a grand slam crown for Croatia, winning the U.S. Open.
September 14, 2014 -- Updated 1334 GMT (2134 HKT)
Serena Williams of the US holds the US Open trophy after defeating Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark during their US Open 2014 women's singles finals match at the USTA Billie Jean King National Center September 7, 2014 in New York. AFP PHOTO/Stan HONDA (Photo credit should read STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Serena Williams is without peer in the modern women's game and now she is on a par with two American tennis legends from the past.
September 2, 2014 -- Updated 1321 GMT (2121 HKT)
American tennis player and golfer Althea Gibson (right) receives a kiss from compatriot Darlene Hard, whom she beat in two sets to become the first black woman to win the Women's Singles Finals at Wimbledon.
Over the course of her remarkable life, Althea Gibson was many things to many people -- but it was tennis where she really left her mark.
August 27, 2014 -- Updated 1145 GMT (1945 HKT)
Canada and tennis? Really? Yup. The North American tennis power balance is swinging away from the States.
August 21, 2014 -- Updated 1252 GMT (2052 HKT)
As a player he was as fiery as his hair -- and as Novak Djokovic's coach, Boris Becker says he has to battle to keep his emotions in check.
August 20, 2014 -- Updated 1102 GMT (1902 HKT)
Tennis great Boris Becker says he was stunned by the level of criticism he received after being appointed as Novak Djokovic's coach.
July 25, 2014 -- Updated 1101 GMT (1901 HKT)
"I didn't cry once when I practiced in front of the mirror," says Martin Emmrich. But the nerves kicked in when he got down on one knee on court.
June 30, 2014 -- Updated 1135 GMT (1935 HKT)
When Agnieszka Radwanska refused to look her opponent in the eye after losing at Wimbledon, it raised more than eyebrows.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 0114 GMT (0914 HKT)
It's 10 years since a teenage Maria Sharapova became the darling of Wimbledon's hallowed Center Court, launching herself as a star.
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 0746 GMT (1546 HKT)
He's regularly voted France's favorite famous person, but many of the nation's youth have "no idea" about his glorious sporting past
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 1555 GMT (2355 HKT)
Five-time grand slam champion Martina Hingis has followed her mom into a coaching role, setting up a new tennis academy in Barcelona, Spain.