Anna Kournikova biography 2022

Tennis Player Anna Kournikova

Anna Kournikova biography

Anna Kournikova was born on June 7, 1981, in Moscow, Russia, to Sergei and Alla. Her father, a lecturer at the Moscow Sports University and a part-time tennis coach, and mother encouraged Anna to play tennis not for fame but for the sport's health benefits.

Her talent was first discovered when she played in a weekly children's sports program at the age of 5, thanks to the racket she received from her parents for Christmas. She began playing and practicing more often, in places like Moscow's Soklniki Park and the Spartak Tennis Club, despite her family being far from wealthy.

Anna's first tennis coach was Larissa Preobraschenskaja from 1985 to 1989. The budding tennis player trained and practiced while studying at school. In 1992, 11-year-old Anna moved to Florida with her mother to attend Nick Bollettieri's Tennis Academy in Bradenton. The tennis facilities made it easier for Anna to commute from the gym to the tennis court to school while in Moscow.

By the time she was 14, she had become the youngest player to win a Fed Cup match and made sure people took notice when she won the EC and Italian Open juniors. When she turned professional in 1996, she entered the scene as the ITF Junior World Champion.

Expectations were high, and she delivered: She reached the fourth round of her first Grand Slam tournament, the 1996 U.S. Open, and the semifinals in his first Wimbledon appearance in 1997.

1998 was a big year for the blonde beauty: Anna became the first Russian woman to be seeded at the U.S. Open since 1976, reached the top 10 in the singles rankings, and upset Martina Hingis in the quarterfinals at the 1998 German Open, becoming the ninth-youngest player to defeat a No. 1 tennis player before turning 17 (since 1968).

Anna won her first Grand Slam doubles title the following year at the 1999 Australian Open with partner Hingis. She reached the fourth round in singles at all three Grand Slam finals, two Grand Slam doubles finals, and one Grand Slam mixed doubles final.

In 2000, Anna Kournikova and Hingis continued to do damage on the courts, finishing the season with a career ranking of No. 8. She even defeated Lindsay Davenport and Nathalie Tauziat en route to the fifth semifinal that year, in San Diego. She later moved down the rankings to No. 19 and beat Sandrine Testud before losing to Venus Williams. At the 2000 German Open in May, Anna experienced the first of what would become a series of injuries.

She appeared in high-profile tournaments, drawing large crowds but not as many titles or victories. After the 2003 Australian Open, she suffered a back injury that led to her withdrawal from that year's Wimbledon matches. But even though Kournikova hasn't been on the tennis scene, she's still everywhere.

In 2001, as a motel manager, Anna Kournikova played a small part in the Jim Carrey comedy, Me, Myself & Irene. She starred opposite Enrique Iglesias in the pop singer's video for "Escape."

FHM's "Sexiest Woman in the World" also made headlines thanks to her relationships with NHL players Pavel Bure and Sergei Fedorov and her romance with Iglesias.

The two are always spotted in South Beach and even made the tabloids when they were heard causing trouble in a hotel room.

Anna Kournikova, one of the wealthiest women in sports, thanks to lucrative contracts with companies such as Adidas, Yonex, Berlei, Omega (also the choice of Cindy Crawford and Pierce Brosnan), and Lycos, named Anna the most famous athlete on the Internet, moving Michael Jordan to the No. 2 spot.

By 2002, she reportedly earned $10 million a year, and she continues to be the most photographed woman in sports - even though her rankings and stats are nothing to write about.

Also flexing her model muscle, Anna Kournikova graced the cover of Sports Illustrated's June 2000 issue and was featured in Sports Illustrated's Swimsuit Edition in 2004.

last updated October 2022

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