Roger Federer defends friend Martina Hingis


Earlier this month, former world number one and holder of five grand slam titles Martina Hingis announced her second retirement from tennis under a cloud of suspicion that she had used cocaine during Wimbledon. The 27-year-old Swiss believes she’s “one hundred percent innocent”, and world’s top-ranked male tennis player Roger Federer is on her side.

“I can’t ever imagine in any way that she took drugs,” Federer said in an interview with a Swiss newspaper. “I hope that she can prove her innocence. I support her.”

Federer, who was once a ballboy for Hingis, has been friends with his compatriot for many years. They played — and won — the Hopman Cup together back in 2000, which he still remembers with pride.

“I know she has said she was proud to have helped me at the beginning of my career,” he said. “At the time, playing in doubles with her, was a privilege for me.”

Martina Hingis will fight to clear her name and the latest news is that she has asked the WTA Tour to help her do that. They will, however, get involved only after doping authorities hand over a report on the case.

“We let that process happen independently and then, depending on the findings of the tennis anti-doping committee, we’ll be there to support Martina,” WTA Tour president Stacy Allaster told The Associated Press at the Sony Ericsson Championships.


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