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Tuesday, Dec 10, 2019

Banned Hingis to play exhibition match

Banned Swiss star Hingis returns for exhibition match.

sports Updated: Jun 12, 2008 20:01 IST


Martina Hingis, banned for two years for testing positive for cocaine after a third-round exit at Wimbledon last year, will play an exhibition match against Jana Novotna during the Liverpool International tennis tournament on Friday.

Organizers are billing it as a rematch of the 1997 Wimbledon final.

Hingis, who spent 209 weeks at No. 1 in the women's rankings and won five Grand Slam singles titles, retired _ for the second time _ last November, the day her doping violation was made public. The International Tennis Federation disqualified Hingis' results from last year's Wimbledon and any subsequent tournaments she played in. She also forfeited any ranking points gained and US$129,481 in prize money and was banned from competitive tennis until October, 2009.

Hingis returned to the sport in 2005 after a four-year absence because of injuries.

When announcing her retirement at a news conference in Zurich, Hingis denied ever using cocaine.

Her 2-6, 6-3, 6-3 win over Novotna at Wimbledon in 1997 was one of the three majors she won that season. Only a loss in the French Open final prevented a season Grand Slam.