Russian Tennis Federation

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Russian Tennis Federation
Russian Tennis Federation official logo.png
Founded15 April 2002 (2002-04-15)[1]
AffiliationInternational Tennis Federation
Regional affiliationTennis Europe
HeadquartersLuznetskaya Naberezhnaya, Moscow
PresidentShamil Tarpishchev
ReplacedAll-Russia Tennis Association
Official website

Russian Tennis Federation (Russian: Федерация тенниса России) is a national governing body of tennis in Russia. It is the successor of the All-Russia Tennis Association (1989–2001) and the Tennis Federation of the USSR (1959–93). After the dissolution of the All-Russia Tennis Association in 2001, it was organized and registered as the supreme governing body of tennis sport in Russia in 2002. However, it is listed as a successor to the All-Russian Union of Lawn Tennis Clubs (VSLTK) established in June 1908, since 1913 it has been one of the founders of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and its member (except 1918—1955); since 1977 — a member of the European Tennis Association Tennis Europe.[2]

Tennis in Russia[edit]

Despite his Scottish surname and ancestry, Arthur Davidovich McPherson (1870–1919) was a native of Petersburg and lived his entire life in Russia. He was the founder and president of the first All-Russian Union of Lawn Tennis Clubs, the forerunner of today's Russian Tennis Federation, and also helped establish the country's first Olympic Committee.

In 1903 he organized the first St. Petersburg tennis championship, and four years later he set up the first national tournament. By 1913 the Russian championship was on the international tour and the game was thriving.

Since the end of the Soviet era, tennis has grown in popularity and Russia has produced a number of famous tennis players. In recent years, the number of top Russian women players has been considerable, with both Maria Sharapova and Dinara Safina reaching number one in the WTA rankings. Other Russian women to achieve international success include Anna Chakvetadze, Elena Dementieva, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Anastasia Myskina, Nadia Petrova, Vera Zvonareva and Anna Kournikova. The Russian Federation has won the Fed Cup 4 times, in 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008. In 2004, 80 percent of their surnames had been advised to be pronounced incorrectly by the official WTA guide.[3]

Another popular issue with Russian tennis players is transliteration from Russian using random systems at once, e. g. the same name (Russian: Женя: Евгений/Евгения, "Zhenya") of Grand Slam champions Eugenia Maniokova (uses translation to Latin for the name and combination of letters "IO" which only visually resembles Russian 'Ю' letter) and Yevgeny Kafelnikov (transliteration to French for Ye-, to English for -geny).[4]

ISO 9 standard applied for all the Grand Slam champions from Russia would produce the following results: Evgeniâ Manûkova, Andrej Ol’hovskij, Evgenij Kafel’nikov, Anna Kurnikova, Marat Safin, Elena Lihovceva, Elena Bovina, Anastasiâ Myskina, Mariâ Šarapova, Svetlana Kuznecova, Vera Zvonarëva, Dinara Safina, Ekaterina Makarova, Elena Vesnina. American standard ALA-LC results: Evgenii͡a Mani͡ukova, Andreĭ Olʹkhovskiĭ, Evgeniĭ Kafelʹnikov, Anna Kurnikova, Marat Safin, Elena Likhovt͡seva, Elena Bovina, Anastasii͡a Myskina, Marii͡a Sharapova, Svetlana Kuznet͡sova, Vera Zvonarëva, Dinara Safina, Ekaterina Makarova, Elena Vesnina.

Transliteration issues for the Russian Grand Slam Champions in singles, doubles or mixed doubles
Current variant in use (Latin script) Transliteration to English Transliteration to French Transliteration to Czech Cyrillic original
Eugenia Maniokova Evgeniya Manyukova Yevguénia Manioukova Evgenija Maňukova Евгения Манюкова
Andrei Olhovskiy Andrey Olkhovsky Andreï Ol’khovskiï Andrej Olchovskij Андрей Ольховский
Yevgeny Kafelnikov Evgeny Kafelnikov Yevguéni Kafel’nikov Evgenij Kafelnikov Евгений Кафельников
Anna Kournikova Anna Kurnikova Anna Kournikova Anna Kurnikova Анна Курникова
Marat Safin Marat Safin Marat Safine Marat Safin Марат Сафин
Elena Likhovtseva Elena Likhovtseva Yelena Likhovtseva Elena Lichovceva Елена Лиховцева
Elena Bovina Elena Bovina Yelena Bovina Elena Bovina Елена Бовина
Anastasia Myskina Anastasiya Myskina Anastassia Myskina Anastasija Myskina Анастасия Мыскина
Maria Sharapova Mariya Sharapova Maria Charapova Marija Šarapova Мария Шарапова
Svetlana Kuznetsova Svetlana Kuznetsova Svetlana Kouznetsova Svetlana Kuzněcova Светлана Кузнецова
Vera Zvonareva Vera Zvonaryova Vera Zvonariova Vera Zvonarjova Вера Звонарёва
Dinara Safina Dinara Safina Dinara Safina Dinara Safina Динара Сафина
Ekaterina Makarova Ekaterina Makarova Yekaterina Makarova Ekatěrina Makarova Екатерина Макарова
Elena Vesnina Elena Vesnina Yelena Vesnina Elena Vesnina Елена Веснина

At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Russia swept the women's tennis podium with Elena Dementieva winning the gold, Dinara Safina and Vera Zvonareva the silver and bronze, respectively. As of 5 October 2009, four Russian women were ranked in the WTA tour's top 10.

Russia also boasts two former number 1 men's players—Safina's older brother Marat Safin and Yevgeny Kafelnikov. Russian men currently in the top 50 include Daniil Medvedev, Andrey Rublev, Aslan Karatsev and Karen Khachanov.[5] The Russian men won the ATP Cup in 2021. Medvedev has been using the German transliteration (medwed33 or daniilmedwed) on his social media accounts, Rublev has chosen to simplify his surname in Latin script — like Vera Zvonareva did — by dropping the umlaut.

Transliteration issues for the Russian winners of the 2021 ATP Cup
Current variant in use (Latin script) Transliteration to English Transliteration to French Transliteration to German Transliteration to Czech Cyrillic original
Daniil Medvedev Daniil Medvedev Daniil Medvedev Daniil Medwedew Daniil Medveděv Даниил Медведев
Andrey Rublev Andrey Rublyov Andreï Roubliov Andrej Rubljow Andrej Rubljov Андрей Рублёв
Aslan Karatsev Aslan Karatsev Aslan Karatsev Aslan Karazew Aslan Karacev Аслан Карацев
Evgeny Donskoy Evgeny Donskoy Yevguéni Donskoï Jewgenij Donskoj Evgenij Donskoj Евгений Донской


The association has been praised worldwide for of the development of tennis in Russia which resulted top class tennis players, specially women players. According to latest WTA and ATP rankings; 4 Russian women and 3 Russian men are in top 50 players of the world.[6]

The association has been honored with the highest award of the European association of Tennis "Tennis Europe" – European Tennis Trophy, five consecutively years from 2005 to 2009 on the set of victories in the professional, junior, veteran tennis and wheelchair tennis. Similarly Russia is recognized as the best tennis power in Europe and in certain categories by full twelve times.[7] All of it has be achieved despite one of the lowest budgets compared to more prosperous federations, e. g. Kazakhstan — the most popular nationality to switch from Russian[8] — largely thanks to the efforts of Russian players themselves and their close relatives.[9][10][11] As a popular example from the 1990s, before leaving for the USA, Yuri — Maria Sharapova's father — made his way to see Shamil Tarpishchev to ask for money. Tarpishchev gave him out of generosity a whole $1000.[12]

Almost all singles Grand Slam / Year-end / Masters 1000 tennis champions from Russia have been strongly associated with either betting scandal (Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Nikolay Davydenko) or doping scandal (Svetlana Kuznetsova[13] and Maria Sharapova) also contributing to a decrease of the popularity of tennis in Russia. In 2005, tennis was the fifth most popular sport to watch in Russia (after football, figure skating, boxing and hockey)[14] but has developed a strong reputation of sport "for rich parents' children only" or for sportspeople's children only (Svetlana Kuznetsova, Elena Dementieva, Marat Safin etc.) which is "not suiting Russia by climate", and dropped in popularity significantly since then.[15][16] The Wimbledon Championships has been broadcast by the local TV since 1984 (without censorship due to the presence of Martina Navratilova which had been cut — since 1986, after she was warmly greeted by the majority Czechs in Prague while participating for the USA in the Fed Cup), the French Open has been broadcast since 1989.[17]

All-Time Top-20 Russian tennis players by the number of ATP / WTA Singles Titles
(plus Doubles — Mixed Doubles, if applied); active players — in bold; last updated 22 March 2021
Name Grand Slam Year-End
Masters 1000 /
Tier I /  PM  /  P5 
All Titles Davis / BJK Cup ATP Cup
(since 2020)
Hopman Cup
(since 1989)
Grand Slam singles champions
Maria Sharapova 5 1 14 S 36
Yevgeny Kafelnikov 2
0 0
G 26
Svetlana Kuznetsova 2
0 2
2004, 2007, 2008
Marat Safin 2 0 5 15
2002, 2006
Anastasia Myskina 1 0 2
2004, 2005
Year-End Championships and Masters 1000 champions with no Grand Slam singles title
Nikolay Davydenko 0 1 3 21
Daniil Medvedev 0 1 3 10 2021
Masters 1000 / Tier I /  PM  /  P5  champions with no GS and Year-End Championships singles title
Elena Dementieva 0 0
G 16
Nadia Petrova 0 0

2007 2007
Dinara Safina 0
0 5
S 12
2005, 2008
Vera Zvonareva 0
0 1
B 12
2004, 2008
Anna Chakvetadze 0 0 1 8 2007, 2008
Andrei Chesnokov
also represented the USSR: from the RSSR (now Russia)
0 0 2 7
Karen Khachanov 0 0 1 4
Elena Vesnina 0

2007, 2008
With no GS, no YEC, no Masters/Tier I/ PM / P5  singles title
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 0 0 0
Mikhail Youzhny 0 0 0 10
2002, 2006
Alex Metreveli
represented the USSR: from the GSSR (now Georgia)
0 0 0 9
Olga Morozova
represented the USSR: from the RSSR (now Russia)
0 0 8
Andrey Rublev 0 0 0 8
Dmitry Tursunov 0 0 0 7
2006 2007
Before the Open Era
Mikhail Sumarokov-Elston
(represented the Russian Empire)
0 0 0 39[18]


  1. ^ "Charter". Retrieved 8 February 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Russian Tennis Federation". Retrieved 8 February 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ Partee, Barbara (21 September 2004). "Language Log: Stress for Russian tennis players' names". Archived from the original on 9 April 2019. Retrieved 17 March 2021.
  4. ^ "Automatic transliteration of the Russian alphabet". Retrieved 18 March 2021.
  5. ^ "ATP Singles Rankings". Retrieved 8 February 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ "WTA Singles Rankings". Retrieved 8 February 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ "European Tennis Trophy Winners 1991–2010". Retrieved 8 February 2011. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ "Бублик признался в ненависти к теннису. Зачем он вообще выходит на корт?" [Bublik confessed his hatred towards tennis. Why does he keep going on a court at all?]. Championat. 23 February 2021. Retrieved 16 March 2021.
  9. ^ "Шамиль Тарпищев о Медведеве и Рублёве, критике Сафина и Южного и о том,почему игроки бегут из России" [Shamil Tarpihsev about Medvelev and Rublev, about critical comments from Safin and Youzhny, and why players run away from Russia]. YouTube (in Russian). Myach Point. 29 December 2020. Retrieved 30 April 2021.
  10. ^ "Шамиль Тарпищев: «Бюджет Федерации тенниса России равен зарплате Гуса Хиддинка»" [Russian Tennis Federation budget equals Guus Hiddink's salary]. (in Russian). 16 October 2008. Retrieved 17 March 2021.
  11. ^ "«$30 млн в год – и мы «похороним» результатами весь мир»" ["$30 mln a year - and we will "bury" with results the whole world"]. (in Russian). Vedomosti. 13 October 2015. Retrieved 17 March 2021. And now we have $6 million. And the budget of the Tennis Federation in the United States is $225 million.
  12. ^ Volkov, Igor (21 June 2007). "Не наша Маша. Шараповой не позволяют играть за Россию!" [Not our Masha. Sharapova is not allowed to play for Russia!]. (in Russian). Youzhny Federaldy. Retrieved 21 March 2021.
  13. ^ "Kuznetsova doping claim dismissed". CNN. 18 January 2005. Retrieved 22 March 2021.
  14. ^ "Бокс. Бокс обошел по популярности хоккей" [Boxing. Boxing has become more popular than hockey]. 1 March 2005. Retrieved 21 March 2021.
  15. ^ Negin, Ilya (7 October 2019). "Почему теннис уже не популярен?" [Why is tennis not popular anymore?]. (in Russian). Retrieved 21 March 2021.
  16. ^ "Рублев считает, что климат России не подходит для тенниса" [Rublev thinks tennis doesn't suit Russia by climate]. Sport Express. 21 May 2020. Retrieved 21 March 2021.
  17. ^ "«Уимблдон» купили за 10к долларов, а «Ролан Гаррос» показывали после речей Собчака. Так теннис появился на ТВ" [Wimbledon [broadcast] was bought for 10k dollars, and Roland Garros was shown after Sobchak's speeches. This is how tennis has appeared on TV]. (in Russian). 24 April 2019. Retrieved 30 April 2021.
  18. ^ "Count Mikhail Sumarokov-Elston – Tennis – Russian Sport – Biographies". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 13 June 2013.