Martina Hingis
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Martina Hingis waits on Roger Federer, Stan Wawrinka to decide on Olympic mixed doubles

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NEW YORK — Martina Hingis is arguably the best doubles player in the world, and with two elite Swiss on the men’s singles side, she could be favored for Olympic mixed doubles gold next year.

This year, the 34-year-old Hingis won the Australian Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open mixed doubles with Indian Leander Paes. She’s the first woman to win three Grand Slam mixed doubles titles in one year since Martina Navratilova in 1985.

Of course, Hingis can’t play with Paes at the Olympics. She must play with a countryman. Will it be Roger Federer or Stan Wawrinka?

“You ask the men,” Hingis said, laughing, after capturing her 19th Grand Slam title combining singles, doubles and mixed doubles at the U.S. Open on Friday (she goes for No. 20 in the women’s doubles final Sunday). “I would be very happy to play the Olympics, and I asked Roger. I asked Stan. I think we still have time, but I feel like I’m in a very luxury position to have that opportunity to play with either Roger or Stan Wawrinka.

“If it’s going to happen, great. The answer, sooner or later. Eventually, it’s going to happen, but I think they have bigger things to do right now,” Hingis finished, laughing.

Federer and Wawrinka, who won 2008 Olympic doubles gold, were to be on opposite sides of the net in a U.S. Open singles semifinal later Friday night.

In March, Federer said Hingis had approached him about playing together in Rio:

“I said I’d give it some thought,” Federer said then. “The problem is, I don’t know how I play singles, doubles, mixed [doubles] within an eight-day period [at the Olympics]. To try to win them all, it’s like 15 matches in eight days [15 in nine days in London 2012]. You tell me how that works. I don’t [know]. I have to figure out things and what my priority is at the end of the day.”

In April, Wawrinka had this to say, according to Tennis.com:

“Well, Hingis asked Roger first. Roger took some time to answer, so she asked me. I want to … see what Roger says since she asked Roger first. I don’t want to say yes now.”

So that’s where it stands.

The top challenger to a Swiss Olympic mixed doubles pair could come from Hingis’ mixed doubles and doubles partners on tour — the Indians Paes and Sania Mirza, who lost in the 2012 Olympic quarterfinals to eventual gold medalists Victoria Azarenka and Max Mirnyi of Belarus.

If Hingis competes in Rio, she will have gone 20 years between Olympic appearances.

She was the second-youngest singles player at the Atlanta 1996 Games, behind Anna Kournikova, according to sports-reference.com. Hingis, then 15, lost in the second round in singles in Atlanta but hoped to continue farther in doubles with Patty Schnyder so she could watch equestrian events.

“I have seen the dressage, but I would also like to see the jumping so I hope we can stay one more day,” the Slovakian-born Hingis said in 1996, according to the Independent. “If we lose, I go home.”

She and Schnyder lost in the quarterfinals in Atlanta.

The next year, she rattled off her first three of five Grand Slam singles titles in the 1990s — the Australian Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open. She skipped the Sydney 2000 Olympics to avoid injury risk and was inactive in 2004 and 2008.

Hingis has exclusively played doubles the last two years and no singles on the WTA Tour since 2007.

In 2011, Hingis, then retired from WTA Tour play, was asked by Federer’s team to consider a comeback. She and Federer discussed playing mixed doubles at the London 2012 Olympics but decided against it. Mixed doubles rejoined the Olympic program in 2012.

Switzerland did not enter a mixed doubles team in London. Federer and Wawrinka lost in the second round of men’s doubles, after winning gold at Beijing 2008. Federer lost to Andy Murray in the singles final, an Olympic singles gold medal still eluding him.

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2020 French Open women’s singles draw, bracket

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If Serena Williams is to win a record-tying 24th Grand Slam singles title at the French Open, she may have to go through her older sister in the fourth round.

Williams, the sixth seed, could play Venus Williams in the round of 16 at Roland Garros, which begins Sunday.

Serena opens against countrywoman Kristie Ahn, whom she beat in the first round at the U.S. Open. Serena could then get her U.S. Open quarterfinal opponent, fellow mom Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria, in the second round.

If Venus is to reach the fourth round, she must potentially get past U.S. Open runner-up Victoria Azarenka in the second round. Azarenka beat Serena in the U.S. Open semifinals, ending the American’s latest bid to tie Margaret Court‘s major titles record.

Venus lost in the French Open first round the last two years.

The French Open top seed is 2018 champion Simona Halep, who could play 2019 semifinalist Amanda Anisimova in the third round.

Coco Gauff, the rising 16-year-old American, gets 2019 semifinalist Jo Konta of Great Britain in the first round in the same quarter of the draw as Halep.

The field lacks defending champion Ash Barty of Australia, not traveling due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Also out: U.S. Open winner Naomi Osaka, citing a sore hamstring and tight turnaround from prevailing in New York two weeks ago.

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2020 French Open men’s singles draw, bracket

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Rafael Nadal was put into the same half of the French Open draw as fellow 2018 and 2019 finalist Dominic Thiem of Austria, with top-ranked Novak Djokovic catching a break.

Nadal, trying to tie Roger Federer‘s male record 20 Grand Slam singles titles, could play sixth-seeded German Alexander Zverev in the quarterfinals before a potential clash with Thiem, who just won the U.S. Open.

Djokovic, who is undefeated in 2020 save being defaulted out of the U.S. Open, could play No. 7 seed Matteo Berrettini of Italy in the quarterfinals before a possible semifinal with Russian Daniil Medvedev.

Medvedev is the fourth seed but is 0-3 at the French Open. Another possible Djokovic semifinal opponent is fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece, who reached the fourth round last year.

The most anticipated first-round matchup is between three-time major champion Andy Murray and 2015 French Open champion Stan Wawrinka. In Murray’s most recent French Open match, he lost in five sets to Wawrinka in the 2017 semifinals.

FRENCH OPEN DRAWS: Men | Women | TV Schedule

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