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Hingis handed tough US Open draw

Hingis has been served a tricky route to the US Open final Keystone Archive

Swiss tennis star Martina Hingis faces a demanding schedule when the US Open gets underway next week, with three dangerous looking opponents likely to cross her path in the first four rounds of the Grand Slam tournament.

The world number one is looking to rediscover her form after a shaky few weeks on the WTA tour, but the draw for the Flushing Meadows event has ensured that Hingis’ bid to end her Grand Slam drought will not be easy.

Russia’s Lina Krasnoroutskaya (WTA 36) will be the Swiss player’s probable opponent in the second round. If Hingis can overcome that challenge, she is then likely to meet Yugoalslavian talent Jelena Dokic (WTA 14) who famously ousted Hingis in the first round of Wimbledon last season.

An appointment with American world number seven Monica Seles is expected to be Hingis’ reward should she make it past Dokic.

The only consolation for Hingis came with the news of her first round opponent – American world number 341 Laura Granville.

If Swiss women’s number two Patty Schnyder (WTA 35) can get past Paraguay’s Rossana de los Rios in the first round, she too is likely to face difficult opposition in the shape of Belgian Wimbledon finalist Justine Henin, who is seeded sixth for the US Open.

Swiss number three Miroslava Vavrinec (WTA 84) comes up against Spain’s Christina Torrens Valero (WTA 31) in the opening round, while Emmanuelle Gagliardi (WTA 87) should fancy her chances against Slovakia’s Karina Habsudova (WTA 94).

Luck of the draw for Federer

In the men’s draw, rising Swiss star Roger Federer (ATP 13) seems to have got a much better break than Hingis. After coming up against Germany’s Lars Burgsmüller (ATP 72) in the first round, the 20-year-old from Basel is then expected to face the winner of the match between Israel’s Harel Levy (ATP 71) and young American Robby Ginepri (ATP 322).

A third round line-up with Holland’s Sjeng Schalken (ATP 29) could then be followed up by a dream match against American second seed Andre Agassi. Although the draw has been kind to Federer, the young Swiss player is likely to have his fitness tested in New York, following an injury that has seen him out of action since July’s Swiss Open in Gstaad.

Swiss numbers two and three Michel Kratochvil (ATP 68) and Marc Rosset (ATP 92) both face Russians in the first round. Kratochvil faces easily the most difficult tie against world number seven Yevgeny Kafelnikov, while Rosset squares up against Andrei Stoliarov (ATP 75).

swissinfo with agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR