Jeļena Ostapenko

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Jeļena Ostapenko
Ostapenko RG18 (9) (42077295315).jpg
Ostapenko at the 2018 French Open
Country (sports) Latvia
ResidenceRiga, Latvia
Born (1997-06-08) 8 June 1997 (age 21)
Riga, Latvia
Height1.77 m (5 ft 10 in)
Turned pro23 April 2012[1]
PlaysRight-handed (two-handed backhand)
CoachGlenn Schaap (2018-)[2]
Prize moneyUS$7,184,484
Singles
Career record206–114 (64.38%)
Career titles2 WTA, 7 ITF
Highest rankingNo. 5 (19 March 2018)
Current rankingNo. 21 (29 October 2018)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open3R (2017, 2018)
French OpenW (2017)
WimbledonSF (2018)
US Open3R (2017, 2018)
Other tournaments
Tour FinalsRR (2017)
Doubles
Career record85–64 (57.05%)
Career titles3 WTA, 8 ITF
Highest rankingNo. 32 (19 June 2017)
Current rankingNo. 38 (29 October 2018)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open1R (2016, 2017, 2018)
French Open1R (2016, 2017, 2018)
Wimbledon3R (2016, 2018)
US Open2R (2016)
Grand Slam Mixed Doubles results
French Open1R (2017)
WimbledonSF (2016)
US Open2R (2017)
Team competitions
Fed Cup27–13
Last updated on: 29 October 2018.

Jeļena Ostapenko (born 8 June 1997), also known as Aļona Ostapenko,[3] is a professional tennis player from Latvia. On 19 March 2018, she reached her best singles WTA rankings of world No. 5, and she peaked at world No. 32 in the WTA doubles rankings on 19 June 2017.

Ostapenko won the 2017 French Open singles title, becoming the first player from Latvia to win a Grand Slam tournament and the first unseeded player to win the French Open since 1933. In addition to her singles career, she has played as a member of Latvia's Fed Cup team.[4] She has won seven singles and eight doubles titles on the ITF Women's Circuit, and she also won the junior singles event at the 2014 Wimbledon Championships. Ostapenko is known for her highly aggressive playing style, including powerful inside-out groundstrokes and a tendency to aim for the lines.

Personal life[edit]

Ostapenko was born in Riga to former footballer Jevgēnijs Ostapenko and Jeļena Jakovļeva. Jevgēnijs played professional football for FC Metalurh Zaporizhya in the Ukrainian city of Zaporizhia where Jeļena's grandmother lives.[5] Jeļena has one half-brother, Maksim, who lives in the United States. She was introduced to tennis at age 5 by her mother and idolized Serena Williams while growing up. She also started dancing around that age, going on to compete in the National Latvian Championships for Ballroom Dancing. At age 12, she chose to focus on tennis and credits her good coordination and skilled footwork to her years of dancing.[6] She speaks Latvian, Russian, and English.[7][8]

Her legal name is Jeļena, but she is known to her family and friends as Aļona. When she was born, her parents' desired name of Aļona was not on the Latvian name calendar, so she was named Jeļena after her mother.[9] Latvian authorities have now clarified, though, that there have been no restrictions in place that would not allow to register the desired name and most likely there has been some misunderstanding.[10] Fans in Latvia and elsewhere in Eastern Europe had always called her Aļona, but the name was unknown in the West until her win at Roland Garros in 2017.[9] She uses her legal name professionally in order to avoid administrative confusion.[11]

Career[edit]

2014: Wimbledon Junior champion and pro debut[edit]

Ostapenko won the singles event at the junior Wimbledon Championships[12] and was ranked the No. 2 junior tennis player in the world in September 2014.[13] She made her WTA Tour main-draw debut at the Tashkent Open, having been awarded a wildcard.

2015: Grand Slam main-draw debut[edit]

At the Ladies Neva Cup, Ostapenko went through qualifying and won the biggest title up to then.

At Wimbledon, Ostapenko defeated the 9th-seeded Carla Suárez Navarro in straight sets (dropping only two games in the match and grabbing her first win over a Top 10 player) in the first round before losing to Kristina Mladenovic.[14][15]

At the US Open, she lost her second-round match to Sara Errani.[16][17]

In September, she reached her career's first WTA final at the Coupe Banque Nationals, where she lost to Annika Beck.

She ended the season as the world No. 79.

2016: First Premier 5 final, Wimbledon mixed doubles semifinalist[edit]

She reached the final of the Qatar Open, a Premier 5 tournament in Doha, beating world No. 8 Petra Kvitová on the way. She was beaten by Carla Suárez Navarro in the final, but she rose to No. 41 in the world rankings.[18]

At the French Open, Ostapenko was seeded in the singles at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time in her career, but she dropped her opening match to Naomi Osaka.

At the Aegon Classic, she beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in straight sets during the first round, and she defeated two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitová in the second. She was defeated by Madison Keys in the quarterfinals. She reached the semifinals of the mixed doubles at Wimbledon with Oliver Marach, but they fell to the eventual champions Heather Watson and Henri Kontinen.[19]

Ostapenko made her Olympic debut at the 2016 Summer Olympics. She lost to Samantha Stosur in the first round.

2017: French Open champion, top 10 debut[edit]

At the Australian Open, she advanced to the third round of a major for the first time, losing to Karolína Plíšková in three sets despite serving for the match in the third set.[20]

At the Charleston Open, she reached the final, losing to fellow 19-year-old Daria Kasatkina.

Ostapenko after winning the 2017 French Open

At the French Open, Ostapenko, then ranked 47th in the world, defeated Louisa Chirico, Monica Puig, Lesia Tsurenko, and Samantha Stosur. She then faced Caroline Wozniacki in the quarterfinals. Ostapenko came from a set down to defeat her, reaching her first ever Grand Slam semifinal. She was the first Latvian female player to do so and first teenager in a decade to reach the French Open semifinals (the last was Ana Ivanovic in 2007), opposite Timea Bacsinszky on June 8, the birthday of both players.[21][22] She beat Bacsinszky in three sets to reach the final, being the first unseeded female player to play in the final of the French Open since Mima Jaušovec in 1983 and the first Latvian player to reach the final of a major.[23] In the final against 3rd-seeded Simona Halep, Ostapenko came back from being down a set and 3–0 to win her first professional title 4–6, 6–4, 6–3. She became the first Latvian player to win a Grand Slam singles tournament and the first unseeded woman to win the French Open since 1933.[24][25][26] Ostapenko also became the first player since Gustavo Kuerten to win his or her first career title at a Grand Slam; coincidentally Kuerten won his first title at the 1997 French Open on the day Ostapenko was born.[27] With the win, she reached a new career-high ranking of world No. 12.[24]

At Wimbledon, Ostapenko beat Aliaksandra Sasnovich, Françoise Abanda, Camila Giorgi, and 4th-seeded Elina Svitolina en route to her second Grand Slam quarterfinal. She lost to five-time champion Venus Williams.

At the US Open in August–September, she reached the third round by defeating Lara Arruabarrena and Sorana Cîrstea,[28] before losing to Daria Kasatkina.[29] Her performance was enough for her to make her top 10 debut in the world rankings, at number 10.

At the end of September, she won her second WTA title at the Korea Open in Seoul. In the Wuhan Open, she beat Barbora Strýcová and Monica Puig to reach the quarterfinals, where she scored her first win over a reigning WTA No. 1, Garbiñe Muguruza,[30] extending her winning streak to eight in a row. She lost to Ashleigh Barty in the semifinal.

In October, she reached the semifinals of the China Open, losing to Simona Halep.[31] At the WTA Finals, she scored a win over Karolína Plíšková but lost to Muguruza and Venus Williams. She ended her 2017 season ranked No. 7 in the world.

2018: Top 5 entrance, Wimbledon semifinal[edit]

At the Indian Wells tournament, Ostapenko beat Belinda Bencic in the second round,[32] but lost to Petra Martić in the third.[33] The result meant that Ostapenko made her debut in the top 5 at No. 5.

She then played at the Miami Open, where she defeated the 9th-seeded Petra Kvitová in the fourth round and 4th-seeded Elina Svitolina in the quarterfinals, 7-6, 7-6. In the semifinals, Ostapenko defeated qualifier Danielle Collins to reach the finals, where she lost to 12th-seeded Sloane Stephens.

Ostapenko entered the French Open as the 5th seed, but was unable to defend her title after losing in the first round to Kateryna Kozlova. Following the loss, Ostapenko left the top 10 for the first time since entering. At Wimbledon, she beat Katy Dunne, Kirsten Flipkens, Vitalia Diatchenko and Aliaksandra Sasnovich to reach the quarterfinal for a second successive year,[34][35] then beat Dominika Cibulková to reach her first Wimbledon semifinal where she lost to eventual winner Angelique Kerber.[36]

Playing style, equipment, and coaches[edit]

In a 2017 article, Steve Tignor of Tennis.com described Ostapenko's mentality as "See ball, hit winner."[37] Eurosport labeled her style as "risky, aggressive, fun tennis".[38]

Ostapenko moves opponents around the court by aiming long strokes at corners and lines, then changes direction to hit powerful winners.[39][40][41] After putting an opponent in a vulnerable position, she regularly seeks to end the point with a cross-court forehand, a down-the-line backhand, a swinging volley, or a drop shot.[21][42] Several journalists have observed her interest in using the entire court, along with her tendency to finish points. Before her participation in the 2017 Volvo Car Open final, an article on the event's website declared, "Most impressive about Ostapenko is her willingness to strike big to all corners of the court, be it a cross-court laser or a bold down-the-line winner."[41] One of her main weaknesses is a high error rate due to her high-risk approach.[21]

She hits powerfully on both wings. In a 2016 interview, Crosscourt View labeled Ostapenko's backhand her "strongest weapon"; the same year, Hartford Courant stated that she "hits a lot of forehand winners".[43][44]

At the 2017 French Open, where Ostapenko won her first professional title, she regularly hit between 35 and 45 winners throughout her matches.[21][45] Following her quarterfinal performance, she attracted multiple comparisons to Monica Seles.[22][37] Ostapenko said in an interview at the event that "aggressive is my style of game".[37] After the final match of that French Open, analysts highlighted the differences between her performance and opponent Simona Halep's performance; Ostapenko had 54 winners and 54 unforced errors, while Halep had 8 winners and 10 unforced errors. ESPN's Simon Cambers wrote "Fear just does not seem to come into [Ostapenko's] vocabulary... Her groundstrokes are simply massive, flat swipes of the ball that left Halep... grasping at shadows."[46][47]

Ostapenko uses Wilson Blade racquets and typically wears Adidas clothing on-court; her apparel was previously supplied by Nike.[48]

She is coached by her mother, with her father serving as a fitness trainer. In 2017, she also trained with two-time French Open doubles champion Anabel Medina Garrigues.[37][49] She parted company with Garrigues at the end of 2017, taking on David Taylor — former coach of Sam Stosur and Ana Ivanovic — to coach her for the majors, with her mother remaining as her full-time coach.[50][51]

Career statistics[edit]

Grand Slam tournament finals[edit]

Result Year Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Win 2017 French Open Clay Romania Simona Halep 4–6, 6–4, 6–3

Grand Slam performance singles timeline[edit]

Key
W  F  SF QF #R RR Q# A NH
(W) Won; (F) finalist; (SF) semifinalist; (QF) quarterfinalist; (#R) rounds 4, 3, 2, 1; (RR) round-robin stage; (Q#) qualification round; (A) absent; (NH) not held. SR=strike rate (events won/competed)
To avoid confusion and double counting, these charts are updated at the conclusion of a tournament or when the player's participation has ended.
Tournament 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 SR W–L Win%
Australian Open A A 1R 3R 3R 0 / 3 4–3 57%
French Open A Q1 1R W 1R 1 / 3 7–2 78%
Wimbledon A 2R 1R QF SF 0 / 4 10–4 71%
US Open A 2R 1R 3R 3R 0 / 4 5–4 56%
Win–Loss 0–0 2–2 0–4 15–3 9–4 1 / 14 26–13 67%

Awards[edit]

Year Awards
2014 Latvian Sports Rising Star of the Year[52]
2015 WTA Tour Breakthrough of the Month (February)
2017 WTA Tour Breakthrough of the Month (May)
2017 WTA Tour Most Improved Player of the Year
2017 Latvian Sportswoman of the Year

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Player Index:Jelena Ostapenko". WTA.
  2. ^ also Jeļena Jakovļeva (her mother), Anabel Medina Garrigues (2017), David Taylor (2018)
  3. ^ "Aļona Ostapenko: 'Neviens mani nav tā apmācījis. Tas vienkārši ir stils, kurā spēlēju'". Latvijas Avīze (in Latvian). 12 June 2017. Retrieved 12 June 2017.
  4. ^ Jeļena Ostapenko at the Fed Cup
  5. ^ (in Russian) Elena Ostapenko: Each victory in the tournament gave me confidence, Tennis Portal Ukraine (8 June 2017)
  6. ^ "Ballroom Dance Fan Ostapenko Waltzes into Qatar Semis". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  7. ^ admin (28 May 2017). "Jelena Ostapenko". WTA Tennis. Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  8. ^ "Birthday girl Ostapenko blazing her own trail- Roland-Garros – The 2017 French Open – Official Site by IBM". www.rolandgarros.com. Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  9. ^ a b Rothenberg, Ben (9 July 2017). "French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko doesn't want to be called by her legal name". Economic Times. Retrieved 12 July 2017.
  10. ^ "Aļona, Jeļena – ārzemju mediji mēģina tikt skaidrībā ar Ostapenko vārdu". Latvijas Avīze (in Latvian). 11 July 2017. Retrieved 15 January 2018.
  11. ^ "Ostapenko, from ballroom dancer to Grand Slam champion". Times of India. AFP. 10 June 2017. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  12. ^ Harwitt, Sandra (6 July 2014). "Rubin and Ostapenko score Wimbledon silver". International Tennis Federation. Retrieved 13 July 2014.
  13. ^ Jeļena Ostapenko at the International Tennis Federation – Junior profile
  14. ^ Foley, Marcus (29 June 2015). "Round-up: Jelena Ostapenko shocks Carla Suarez Navarro". Eurosport. Retrieved 3 September 2015.
  15. ^ "Wimbledon Day 5, 3rd Round Previews: Azarenka v Mladenovic, Stephens v Safarova". Moo's Tennis Blog. 2 July 2015. Retrieved 3 September 2015.
  16. ^ "Latest on US Open: Errani overcomes dizziness to win in 3". U.S. News & World Report. 3 September 2015. Retrieved 3 September 2015.
  17. ^ "Ostapenko wins her first ever U.S Open match and advances 2nd round". The Baltic Course. 2 September 2015. Retrieved 3 September 2015.
  18. ^ Ranking Watch: Ostapenko New Teen Titan, World Tennis Association, 29 February 2016
  19. ^ Imhoff, Dan (8 July 2016). "Watson into mixed doubles semi-finals". Wimbledon.com. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  20. ^ "2017 results". CBSSports.com. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  21. ^ a b c d "The Latest: Latvia's Ostapenko into French Open semifinals". abc news. Associated Press. 6 June 2017. Retrieved 30 August 2017.
  22. ^ a b Mitchell, Kevin (6 June 2017). "Jelena Ostapenko sets up birthday treat with Timea Bacsinszky in Paris". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  23. ^ "French Open 2017". skysports.com. 8 June 2017. Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  24. ^ a b Clarey, Christopher. "Jelena Ostapenko, Unseeded Latvian, Rallies to Win French Open". nytimes.com. 10 June 2017. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  25. ^ "French Open: Jelena Ostapenko beats Simona Halep to win first Grand Slam". BBC Sport. 10 June 2017.
  26. ^ "On a day of firsts, unseeded Ostapenko reaches French Open final". Tennis.com. 8 June 2017.
  27. ^ "French Open: Jelena Ostapenko beats Simona Halep to win first Grand Slam". BBC Sport. 10 June 2017. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  28. ^ "Solid Ostapenko powers past Cirstea at US Open". WTA Tennis. 31 August 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2018.
  29. ^ "Kasatkina crushes Ostapenko in US Open third round". WTA Tennis. 2 September 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2018.
  30. ^ "Jelena Ostapenko upsets Garbine Muguruza to reach Wuhan Open semifinal". Tennis.com. AP. 28 September 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2018.
  31. ^ "China Open: Simona Halep world number one after win over Jelena Ostapenko". BBC Sport. 7 October 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2018.
  32. ^ "Jelena Ostapenko Overcomes Belinda Bencic in Indian Wells". TENNIS.com. 9 March 2018. Retrieved 17 March 2018.
  33. ^ "Indian Wells: Simona Halep avoids upset but Jelena Ostapenko & Petra Kvitova beaten". BBC. 12 March 2018. Retrieved 17 March 2018.
  34. ^ Kane, David (7 July 2018). "Ostapenko dismisses Diatchenko, into Wimbledon second week". WTA. Retrieved 9 July 2018.
  35. ^ "Ostapenko into Wimbledon quarter-finals". Sport24. 9 July 2018. Retrieved 9 July 2018.
  36. ^ Livaudais, Stephanie (10 July 2018). "Ostapenko overcomes Cibulkova for first Wimbledon semifinal". WTA. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  37. ^ a b c d Tignor, Steve (6 June 2017). "Jelena Ostapenko's two-month clay run has her two wins from the title". Tennis.com. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  38. ^ "Jelena Ostapenko – Caroline Wozniacki French Open women". Eurosport.com. 6 June 2017. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  39. ^ Han, Don (5 June 2017). "French Open quarterfinal preview: Jelena Ostapenko vs Caroline Wozniacki". Vavel.com. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  40. ^ Giardina, Brooks (23 June 2016). "2016 Wimbledon player profile: Jelena Ostapenko". Vavel.com. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  41. ^ a b "Singles Final". volvocaropen.com. 8 April 2017. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  42. ^ "French Open 2017: Teenager Jelena Ostapenko stuns Caroline Wozniacki to reach last four". Eurosport.com. 6 July 2016. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  43. ^ Higgins, Stephen (25 June 2016). "Q&A: Jelena Ostapenko". crosscourtview.ie. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  44. ^ "Radwanska Doesn't Need Another Marathon In Dispatching Ostapenko". courant.com. 23 August 2016. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  45. ^ Oddo, Chris (4 June 2017). "Ostapenko Cracks Milestone with Win over Stosur in Paris". tennisnow.com. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  46. ^ Bodo, Peter. "French Open takeaways: Ostapenko's fearlessness ruled the day". espn.com. 10 June 2017. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  47. ^ Cambers, Simon. "No reason Ostapenko won't find herself in a similar situation many more times". espn.com. 10 June 2017. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  48. ^ "Jelena Ostapenko". midwestsports.com. 7 June 2017. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  49. ^ Perkins, Adam (3 March 2016). "Jelena Ostapenko: The latest 18 year old sensation on the WTA Tour". Vavel.com. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  50. ^ Schlink, Leo (17 December 2017). "French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko joins forces with Sam Stosur's former coach David Taylor". News.com.au. Retrieved 15 January 2018.
  51. ^ Tandon, Kamakshi. "Jelena Ostapenko Brings David Taylor on as New Coach". Tennis.com. 16 December 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2018.
  52. ^ "Martins Dukurs and Anastasija Grigorjeva names Latvia's Athletes of the Year". leta.lv. Retrieved 8 March 2016.

External links[edit]

Awards
Preceded by
Zemgus Girgensons
Latvian Rising Sports Personality of the Year
2014
Succeeded by
Kristaps Porziņģis
Preceded by
Laura Ikauniece-Admidiņa
Latvian Sportswoman of the Year
2017
Succeeded by
Incumbent