Swiss tennis great Martina Hingis, who is both a Hall of Famer and part of the current world No. 1 doubles team, was honored at the BNP PARIBAS WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global on Sunday evening in a special ceremony to present her official Hall of Fame ring. The Hall of Fame rings are one-of-a-kind pieces that are presented to Hall of Famers at tennis events around the world to commemorate their recognition as being among the sport's greatest champions and leaders.
During the ceremony, Hingis reminisced about her induction into the International Tennis Hall of Fame, which took place in 2013.
"It was such a special day for me, because it's not just winning one match, it's about your entire career. That was a very special moment," said Hingis. "When we start the game, we don't think about making a legacy. When you see the photos of Billie Jean King, Martina Navratilova, Chris Evert, and all these players, we just try to make a little bit of history and try to make it into their footsteps."
The ring was presented by Hall of Fame CEO Todd Martin, before a packed house of fans who showed their adoration for Hingis with enthusiastic cheers and applause.
"The mission of the International Tennis Hall of Fame is to preserve the history of the sport, celebrate its legends, and inspire its future. Martina, you continue to make history every week of the year," said Martin. "This ring is reserved for only the best of the best in our sport. It signifies the great success you've already had and the amazing success you continue to have. Congratulations."
Hingis, who also serves as a Global Ambassador for the International Tennis Hall of Fame, took a moment during the ceremony to tell the Singapore fans about the Hall of Fame.
"You have to go there; you should all try to visit the museum," she said. "It's such a beautiful place about the history of our game. Every time I visit I learn something new. There's so much history there. I hope you'll all visit or follow along with their programs and work online. I hope you'll do that, and I know you'll enjoy every moment."
Hingis won 15 Grand Slam tournament titles before retiring in 2007 and has added 5 more since making a comeback in 2013. The former world No. 1 in singles is one of just six players in the sport's history to have simultaneously held the No. 1 ranking in singles and doubles, and today she is part of the world No. 1 doubles team.
Hingis has been breaking records and making tennis history since she first burst onto the global tennis scene in 1996, and continues to do so today. In 1996, Hingis set her first of many records, becoming the youngest Grand Slam champion of all time, when she won the women's doubles title at Wimbledon with Helena Suková at age 15 years and 9 months. This season on tour, she became the only player in the Open Era to win the US Open doubles and mixed doubles and the Wimbledon doubles and mixed doubles titles in the same calendar year. She is also the first player to have won three mixed Grand Slam titles in the same calendar year since 1969.
Hingis is one of 243 people from 21 nations who have been honored with induction into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.