Monday, January 09, 2006

Hingis v. Henin-Hardenne: In her first match against a top 10 player, the Swiss Miss fell well-short of the mark. Hardenne beat her soundly, 6-3, 6-3 -- breaking her on her first service and then pretty much toying with her from there.

What makes this match so interesting (and to be fair, it's only the third or fourth match Martina has played since resuming her career), is that of all the top 10 players out there, Hardenne is physically and game-play wise the most like her ... shorter, slighter, more angles and placement than power and brute strength. Granted, Justine is probably the best at those tactics, and Hingis has a ton of rust to shake off, but if Hardenne can handle Martina this easily, one shudders to think of Sharapova or one of the Williams girls (when healthy and interested) might do to the little thing from Switzerland.

My prediction is that Martina keeps a game face on into the French. If she gets wiped out there, on a surface that plays to ALL of her strengths, then it's quit-time and into a broadcast booth.

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