“That Is Crazy” – Martina Hingis Compares Her Forehand Grip With Coco Gauff and Other Young Tennis Players

Published 05/27/2021, 7:21 AM EDT
Tennis – Yarra Valley Classic – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 1, 2021 Cori Gauff of the U.S. in action during her match against Switzerland’s Jil Teichmann REUTERS/Loren Elliott


In today’s time, tennis athletes can get their racquets customized, down to the T, to benefit their game. However, it was not the same when former singles and doubles World No.1 Martina Hingis started playing the sport. Thus, she always struggled with the new-age racquets until she retired for a third and final time in 2017.

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Hingis was one of the most successful singles tennis players in the 90s. But unfortunately, persistent injury led her to early retirement. Following that, the Swiss professional focused on her doubles career and attained considerable success.

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In conservation with Chris Evert, Hingis expressed that her game would have been different if she had been playing now. It also reminded her of a striking incident with eight-time Grand Slam champion Andre Agassi.

Martina Hingis on Coco Gauff and other tennis player’s grip

To begin with, Hingis suggested that the incident with Agassi took place when he was coaching Novak Djokovic. She even remembered that it was during Wimbledon Championships. But what came later made 18-time Grand Slam champion Evert go, “Oh My God!”

“He hasn’t seen me in a long time, and I was still playing doubles,” Hingis began. It must have happened around the 2017 Wimbledon. However, she said, “And he comes in the court after us, and he’s like what happened to your forehand?”

In response, Hingis explained using hand gestures that her grip made it impossible to play a backhand. “I couldn’t hit a backhand like Berasategui the other way around,” she added.

Furthermore, the retired Swiss stated that it was not extreme; however, her grip somehow changed with the new racquets. But looking at 17-year-old Coco Gauff, she is inspired to play more freely.

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“Like Coco Gauff today or other so many young players, they have this super western grip, that is crazy,” Hingis said. “But sometimes, I am thinking like, I could play a forehand and turn around and just hit a backhand again.”

Mar 25, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; Cori Gauff of the United States hits a forehand against Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia (not pictured) of the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Indeed, the lower-hand grip allows Coco to play her aggressive game extensively. It is inarguably one of the crucial factors behind the teenager’s rapid growth in WTA.

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Do you think Gen Z would’ve played the same in the 90s and 20s?

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Purav Joshi

1127 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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