Hingis’ HoF induction airs Saturday

July 11, 2013

LOS ANGELES — Tennis Channel will offer live coverage as former teen phenomenon Martina Hingis is inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame Saturday, July 13, at 12:30 p.m. ET. The ceremony will take place on the historic grass-court stadium at the Hall’s grounds in Newport, R.I., and include the inductions of Australian Thelma Coyne Long, a three-time Australian Open champion, and three other honorees.

The celebration will showcase speeches by the new Hall of Famers and friends or family members that they have personally chosen to introduce them. The event typically sells out, with 4,000 fans in the stands and another 300 watching a live simulcast in the Hall of Fame theatre.

Former World No. 1 Swiss singles player Hingis, who was named one of the “30 Legends of Women’s Tennis: Past, Present and Future” in 2011 by Time magazine, made her professional tennis debut at the age of 14, when she became the youngest player to win a match at a Grand Slam tournament when she advanced to the second round of the Australian Open in 1995. In 1996, she became the youngest Grand Slam champion of all time when she teamed with Helena Sukov√° of the Czech Republic at Wimbledon to win the women’s doubles title at the age of 15. In 1997, she became the undisputed World No. 1 women’s tennis player and topped the rankings for 209 weeks. Hingis has won five major singles championships — three at the Australian Open (1997, 1998, 1999), Wimbledon (1997) and the US Open (1997) — and was a two-time French Open finalist (1998, 2000).

Thelma Coyne Long played competitively from 1935 to 1958 with a majority of her success taking place in her native Australia. She won both the women’s singles title and doubles title with Nancye Wynne Bolton at the Australian Open in 1952, captured the tournament’s singles title again in 1954 and was a runner-up in the event four other times.

This Saturday’s International Tennis Hall of Fame inductions will also include South African-born Cliff Drysdale, a former top-ranked player of the 1960s and 1970s who helped form the ATP in 1972 and served as its first president. After the conclusion of his playing career he has been one of the most respected television analysts with ESPN. In addition to Drysdale, No. 1 tennis player Charlie Pasarell will be inducted for his historic efforts in building the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, which is home to the BNP Paribas Open. Rounding out the class of 2013 is Ion Tiriac, a former Romanian tennis player and prominent European tournament director of the Mutua Madrid Open.

In addition to the induction ceremony, Tennis Channel is in Newport this weekend for live coverage of the Hall of Fame quarterfinals, semifinals and championship.

Tennis Channel’s Live 2013 Hall of Fame Schedule: