Hingis Advances to Second Round at Roland Garros

Published May 29th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Swiss teenager Martina Hingis made an impressive start to her French Open campaign with a 6-0, 6-4 win over Belgium's Sabine Appelmans in her first-round women's singles match on Monday. 

Top-seeded Hingis, aiming to win the only Grand Slam title that has eluded her, looked slick as she swept aside Appelmans in just 52min. 

Hingis race through the first set in just 16 minutes on a sunny but blustery center court, allowing Appelmans - a former top 20-ranked player - just eight points. 

Hingis, 19-year-old, hit the ball deep and hard but also had time to add the odd delicate drop shot. 

Appelmans finally got on the scoreboard in the second game of the second set and fought her way from 2-4 to 4-4 as Hingis' concentration briefly wavered. 

Hingis promptly broke for 5-4, however, and then served out for the match. 

Slovak-born Hingis showed no signs of the foot injury, which has been troubling her recently and now plays either German qualifier Julia Abe or Austrian qualifier Marion Maruska. 

Hingis is looking to make amends this year after breaking down in tears and throwing tantrums as she lost to Steffi Graf in last year's dramatic final. Croatia’s Iva Majoli in the final also beat Hingis three years ago. 

Despite her outburst last year, Hingis was given a relatively warm welcome by the Paris fans. 

First-round men's and women's singles were being played on 16 of the slow, red clay courts on the opening day of the second Grand Slam tournament of the year. 

Among the highlights of the program is a first-round men's singles between second-seeded American Pete Sampras, who is aiming for a record 13th Grand Slam title here, and big-serving Australian Davis Cup star Mark Philippoussis – (AFP)

© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

You may also like