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

Martina Hingis played her first WTA match since 2007 2007 at the  Southern California Open alongside Daniela Hantuchova.

Story highlights

  • 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

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

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.

Japan's 'rock star' tennis pro
Japan's 'rock star' tennis pro

    JUST WATCHED

    Japan's 'rock star' tennis pro

MUST WATCH

Japan's 'rock star' tennis pro 02:47
Tennis baby takes Internet by storm
Tennis baby takes Internet by storm

    JUST WATCHED

    Tennis baby takes Internet by storm

MUST WATCH

Tennis baby takes Internet by storm 05:23
Andy Murray's historic Wimbledon win
Andy Murray's historic Wimbledon win

    JUST WATCHED

    Andy Murray's historic Wimbledon win

MUST WATCH

Andy Murray's historic Wimbledon win 03:48

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.

"After the first set it was pure pleasure."

Andy Murray 'held his grit'
Andy Murray 'held his grit'

    JUST WATCHED

    Andy Murray 'held his grit'

MUST WATCH

Andy Murray 'held his grit' 00:42
Murray inspired by friend's cancer fight
Murray inspired by friend's cancer fight

    JUST WATCHED

    Murray inspired by friend's cancer fight

MUST WATCH

Murray inspired by friend's cancer fight 05:01
Monica Seles is now a novelist
Monica Seles is now a novelist

    JUST WATCHED

    Monica Seles is now a novelist

MUST WATCH

Monica Seles is now a novelist 03:56

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."

        Tennis

      • 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.

        What does 2015 hold for Rafa?

        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?
      • LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 17: Wimbledon champion Andy Murray and his long time girlfriend Kim Sears arrive at Buckingham Palace on October 17, in London, England. Murray will become an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) and receive his medal from the Duke of Cambridge. (Photo by John Stillwell - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

        Love game: Andy Murray to tie knot

        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.
      • Despite being forced to retire at the age of 24 due to health problems, Lacoste remained in the game and went on start the "Lacoste" brand in 1933, which specialised in tennis products. The inspiration for the company's logo came from his nickname as a player, "le crocodile."

        'Crocodile' who broke all the rules

        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.
      • 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 savors U.S. Open win

        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.
      • 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.

        The amazing life of Althea Gibson

        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.
      • Courting couple at match point

        "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.
      • LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 03: Tennis / Frauen: Wimbledon 2004, London; Finale; Siegerin Maria SHARAPOVA / RUS 03.07.04. (Photo by Bongarts/Bongarts/Getty Images)

        'Baby' Sharapova's big moment

        It's 10 years since a teenage Maria Sharapova became the darling of Wimbledon's hallowed Center Court, launching herself as a star.
      • 'Swiss Miss' follows mom's lead

        Five-time grand slam champion Martina Hingis has followed her mom into a coaching role, setting up a new tennis academy in Barcelona, Spain.