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Wednesday September 28th, 2011

Martina Hingis (left) beat Jana Novotna in the 1997 Wimbledon final. (Bob Martin/SI)

Memory Lane is a recurring feature in which we dig through SI.com's photo archives for classic pictures.

At the time, Jana Novotna's loss to 16-year-old Martina Hingis in the 1997 Wimbledon final cemented her status as one of the best players never to win a Grand Slam tournament. The three-set defeat also added another chapter of heartbreak to her All England Club résumé, as four years earlier Novotna had squandered a 4-1, 40-30 third-set lead against Steffi Graf.

But Novotna would exact revenge -- and finally secure her major breakthrough -- a year later. At 29, she defeated Hingis in the 1998 Wimbledon semifinals, then knocked off Nathalie Tauziat to improve to 1-3 in Grand Slam finals.

Novotna retired in 1999. It was nice to see her go out with tears of joy rather than tears of despair:

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