||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (March 2012)|
|Residence||Monte Carlo, Monaco|
27 November 1978 |
|Height||1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|Plays||Right-handed (two-handed backhand)|
|Career record||343–257 (at ATP Tour level, Grand Slam level, and in Davis Cup)|
|Highest ranking||No. 8 (10 July 2006)|
|Current ranking||No. 44 (11 November 2013)|
|Grand Slam Singles results|
|Australian Open||3R (2003, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2013)|
|French Open||4R (2008)|
|US Open||4R (2009)|
|Tour Finals||RR (2008)|
|Olympic Games||1R (2008, 2012)|
|Career record||253–157 (at ATP Tour level, Grand Slam level, and in Davis Cup)|
|Highest ranking||No. 4 (12 November 2012)|
|Current ranking||No. 5 (9 September 2013)|
|Grand Slam Doubles results|
|Australian Open||W (2012)|
|French Open||SF (2007)|
|US Open||W (2013)|
|Other Doubles tournaments|
|Tour Finals||SF (2012)|
|Davis Cup||W (2012, 2013)|
|Last updated on: 17 November 2013.|
Radek Štěpánek (Czech pronunciation: [ˈradɛk ˈʃcɛpaːnɛk]; born 27 November 1978) is a professional tennis player from the Czech Republic. His career-high singles ranking is World No. 8 and best doubles ranking is World No. 4. Štěpánek's biggest achievements are reaching two Masters 1000 event finals and the quarter-final of Wimbledon in 2006, as well as winning the deciding match for Czech Republic's Davis Cup winning team in 2012 and again in 2013. In doubles, he won his first major title at the 2012 Australian Open, along with Indian partner Leander Paes, defeating the Bryan Brothers in the final. Paes and Stepanek also won the Men's Doubles title at the 2013 US Open, defeating the Bryan Brothers in the semi-finals and Bruno Soares and Alexander Peya in the finals.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Career
- 3 Personal life
- 4 Significant finals
- 5 ATP career finals
- 6 Singles performance timeline
- 7 Doubles performance timeline
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Born in Karviná, Moravia-Silesia, Stepanek began playing tennis at age three with his father Vlastimil, who was a tennis coach. Štěpánek's brother is a policeman and his mother a librarian. His cousin is Jaromír Blažek, who represented the Czech Republic as a football goalkeeper. Stepanek grew up admiring Czech tennis player Ivan Lendl, particularly noting "he was the one who brought professionalism to the sport with his conditioning."
Štěpánek turned professional in 1997. He started on tour as a doubles specialist, winning 12 ATP titles. Since 2002, Štěpánek has focused on being a better singles player while still playing top-level doubles. He is known for his after-the-shot grunting, his over-the-top celebrations and his many relationships with WTA players.
2006 was Štěpánek's best year to date; he found himself on the verge of getting into the top ten of ATP rankings, as he defeated José Acasuso in the semi-finals of the Masters Series event in Hamburg. He went on to lose the final in straight sets against Spain's Tommy Robredo. At that point, he achieved a career-high ATP world ranking of No. 11 in singles.
Earlier in 2006, he won his first ATP singles title, beating Christophe Rochus in Rotterdam, but he had yet to progress beyond the third round of a Grand Slam tournament until he got into the quarter-finals at Wimbledon, where he was eliminated by 34-year-old Jonas Björkman, after holding match point at 7–6 in the fourth-set tie-break.
This performance helped Štěpánek break into the top 10 and achieve his highest world ranking of no. 8. However, after Wimbledon, Štěpánek was out of action for the rest of the year due to a chronic neck injury.
In the second round of the 2007 US Open, Štěpánek played a match against third seed Novak Djokovic, which he ended up losing after 4 hours and 44 minutes of play in a fifth-set tiebreak, 7–6, 6–7, 7–5, 5–7, 6–7.
Earlier in 2007, he won his second ATP singles title, beating James Blake in Los Angeles in three sets.
In 2008, he achieved some good results such as reaching the final in San Jose, but losing to Andy Roddick. He also made it to the semifinals in the Rome Masters, losing to Novak Djokovic after he retired due to heat exhaustion. In the 2008 Summer Olympics, he lost to Michaël Llodra in the first round in three sets. Štěpánek finished the season ranked no. 27, but attended the year-end Masters Cup as an alternate. He was vacationing in Thailand and so was able to come to the tournament held in Shanghai without delay. Since he did not have his own tennis gear which got stuck in customs (they were sent from home), he had to borrow a racquet from Novak Djokovic and socks from Andy Murray. After Andy Roddick pulled out due to injury before his second match, Štěpánek entered the tournament with two round-robin ties to play against Roger Federer and Gilles Simon. He gave the second seed Federer a tough match, losing 6–7, 4–6. But he was beaten comprehensively by Simon, 1–6, 4–6.
Štěpánek started his 2009 season at the Brisbane International with a new Bosworth racquet, where he claimed his third ATP title after coming back from a set down to defeat Fernando Verdasco, 3–6, 6–3, 6–4 in the final. Then, at the Australian Open, he made it to the third round and was overpowered by Verdasco, 4–6, 0–6, 0–6.
At the SAP Open in San Jose, he won his fourth ATP singles title, beating American Mardy Fish in a three-set final. He also snapped a four-match losing streak in the tournament against Andy Roddick, upsetting him 3–6, 7–6, 6–4 in the semifinals. He also captured the doubles title after teaming up with German Tommy Haas, making it his first time to win the singles and doubles titles at the same tournament.
In the Davis Cup first round tie against France, he lost his opening match to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in straight sets. However, he regained his confidence and won the doubles rubber the next day and his second singles match against Gilles Simon in straight sets to give the Czech Republic a berth in the quarterfinals. Then, in the Davis Cup quarterfinals, he won the deciding fifth rubber to lead his country to the semifinals. In the semifinals, Stepanek battled Ivo Karlović to a 6–7, 7–6, 7–6, 6–7, 16–14 victory in a marathon opener in which the 82 games played equalled the highest number in a Davis Cup rubber since the introduction of the tiebreak in 1989. In that match, he was aced 78 times, but overall hit more winners, over 170 (including service winners). The match was one of the longest in the history of the Davis Cup, lasting 5 hours and 59 minutes. There were only three breaks of serve in this match. In the finals of the Davis Cup versus Spain, Stepanek lost to David Ferrer after being two sets up, 6–1, 6–2, 4–6, 4–6, 6–8. The Czech Republic lost 5–0 to Spain.
Štěpánek returned to the Brisbane International to defend his title. He made a second final appearance, but failed to defend the title, losing to Andy Roddick, 6–7, 6–7. He also teamed up with Tomáš Berdych to reach the doubles quarterfinals, only to lose to eventual champions Jérémy Chardy and Marc Gicquel. Seeded 13th at the 2010 Australian Open, he lost in the first round to Ivo Karlović in five sets, 6–2, 6–7, 4–6, 6–3, 4–6.
Štěpánek began the 2011 season with a third successive appearance at the 2011 Brisbane International, hoping for a third successive finals appearance, despite only being ranked no. 62. For the first round he was drawn against world no. 67, German Tobias Kamke. Despite struggling for the first set, he eventually won, 5–7, 6–1, 6–4, to set up a second-round match against Mardy Fish, the fourth seed in the tournament. Stepanek blazed through the match, thrashing the world no. 16 Fish, 6–3, 6–1. In the quarterfinals against seventh seed and world no. 37 Florian Mayer, he had a dominant start, leading 5–1 in the first set, before Mayer managed to break his serve. However, he continued his winning streak, emerging victorious, 6–3, 6–3, to place himself in the first semifinal against Robin Söderling, where he lost.
In April 2012, Serbia's Janko Tipsarević defeated him, 7–5, 4–6, 4–6, 6–4, 7–9, to level the Davis Cup quarterfinal at 1–1, after a stormy five-hour match. Tipsarević, Serbia's top player in the absence of world no. 1 Novak Djokovic, saved three match points before securing victory. After the match, Tipsarević accused Stepanek of using his middle finger inappropriately during their handshake and calling him a "stinky bastard". Stepanek denied that he did either of these things, and none of the footage taken at the match showed clearly what happened. An online photo of the hands of both players showed Stepanek's finger folded in, but Štěpánek claims the picture was taken after he was already pulling his hand back. Neither this photo nor footage provided by a Czech TV station conclusively support Tipsarević´s version of the events. Štěpánek later stated that what he actually said to Tipsarević was "You don't need to cheat", referring to Tipsarević's winning a point after the ball had bounced twice and erasing a mark before the chair umpire could check whether the ball was in or out.
Štěpánek and Paes made it to the finals of US Open, this time losing to the Bryan brothers, 3–6, 4–6. On 7 November 2012, Štěpánek and Leander Paes started off with a win in the ATP world tour tournament.
He won the Davis Cup together with Tomáš Berdych against Spain playing both singles and doubles. In the Hollywood-script-like final in Prague, Štěpánek won the decisive rubber against Nicolás Almagro, at the time ranked 21 spots above Štěpánek on the ATP ranking ladder, becoming only the second player 30 or older to win a deciding Davis Cup final match in the history of the competition.
Štěpánek underwent neck surgery on January 21 to relieve pressure where a disc was pressing on a nerve rendering his right hand numb and weak. He recovered well and won US Open in doubles with Leander Paes.
Later in the year, at New York, he won his second major double title, again with Paes. They defeated the top seeds Mike Bryan and Bob Bryan in the semifinals, ending their streak of four major titles. Paes and Štěpánek went on to defeat the second seeds Bruno Soares and Alexander Peya 6-1, 6-3 in the finals.
In the Davis Cup semifinal, he helped the Czech Republic beat Argentina as he beat Juan Monaco in the opening singles match and continued to win the doubles with Berdych. In the final against Serbia, he won the doubles and the deciding singles match to defend their title. He became the first person in Davis Cup history to win consecutive live deciding singles rubbers
Štěpánek was engaged to Swiss tennis star Martina Hingis, but they split up in August 2007. He married former top-ten Czech tennis player Nicole Vaidišová in 2010. They separated in 2013. He is currently dating Czech tennis player Petra Kvitová 
Grand Slam finals
Doubles: 4 (2 titles, 2 runners-up)
|Runner-up||2002||US Open||Hard||Jiří Novák|| Max Mirnyi
|3–6, 6–3, 4–6|
|Winner||2012||Australian Open||Hard||Leander Paes|| Bob Bryan
|Runner-up||2012||US Open||Hard||Leander Paes|| Bob Bryan
|Winner||2013||US Open||Hard||Leander Paes|| Alexander Peya
Masters 1000 finals
Singles: 2 (2 runners-up)
|Runner-up||2004||Paris||Carpet (i)||Marat Safin||3–6, 6–7(5–7), 3–6|
|Runner-up||2006||Hamburg||Clay||Tommy Robredo||1–6, 3–6, 3–6|
Doubles: 2 (2 titles)
|Winner||2012||Miami||Hard||Leander Paes|| Max Mirnyi
|6–3, 1–6, [8–10]|
|Winner||2012||Shanghai||Hard||Leander Paes|| Mahesh Bhupathi
|6–7(7–9), 6–3, [10–5]|