Martina Hingis turned back the clock to reach the US Open women’s doubles final, 12 years after her last run to a title match at the majors.
The Swiss 33-year-old and her Italian partner Flavia Pennetta made the championship match with a 6-3, 6-4 win over third seeds Sania Mirza and Cara Black, the India-Zimbabwe pairing.
Hingis last appeared in a doubles final at a grand slam in 2002 at the Australian Open where she won the title with Anna Kournikova, one of nine doubles crowns she captured during her prime.
“It’s great to be out here again, I am enjoying every second and I really feel the energy of the crowd,” said Hingis, who also captured the 1998 doubles title in New York with Jana Novotna.
“I got goosebumps over the last three games. There was so much tension and nerves out there as I don’t know how many more chances I will get to play again. I enjoy every second.”
In the final on Saturday, Hingis and Pennetta, who are playing their first grand slam tournament together, will face Russian fourth seeds Elena Vesnina and Ekaterina Makarova for the title.
Hingis won five grand slam singles titles, 43 WTA Tour singles crowns and was once world number one before retiring for six years.
“I only won one title here in doubles. That was a while back in ’98. I made some good matches, like some great memories, but it’s been a while. So it’s like I really cherish this moment because I have had some great matches, but also in doubles I didn’t feel like I had too many opportunities,” added Hingis.
“I lost to players that actually I beat in this tournament now again, like Peschke.”
Hingis said that she and Pennetta are a perfect match, both bringing strengths to the court.
“She can hold her own from the baseline and I try to scare them at the net.”