Victoria Azarenka: The Belarusian Tennis Wonder

Victoria Azarenka was born on July 31 1989, in Minsk, the capital city of Belarus. She is a Belarusian professional tennis player.  Until now, she has 21 WTA singles including two Grand Slam singles titles at the 2012 and 2013 Australian Open, becoming the first Belarusian player, male or female, to win a Grand Slam tournament singles title. 

Azarenka is a former world No. 1 in singles, having claimed the top ranking for the first time on 30 January 2012.  She also has 9 WTA doubles titles to her credit. 

When it comes to her playing style, Azarenka is an aggressive baseliner, who is known for hitting the ball hard, flat, and early on the rise. Azarenka’s strongest groundstroke is her two-handed backhand, which is considered to be one of the greatest backhands of all time. 

Biotable

Age 32
Height 1.83 mts
Nationality Belarus
Turned professional 2003
Career titles 21
Highest ranking (Singles) No. 1
Current ranking (Singles) No. 16
Social media profile Instagram @vichka35

Twitter @vika7

Personal Information and Relationships

  • On 31 July 1989, Azarenka was born in Minsk, to Alla and Fyodor Azarenka.
  • She has an elder brother Max
  • Her family soon moved to Scottsdale Arizona so that she could get better training.
  • Between 2005 and 2009, she was coached by António van Grichen followed by Sam Sumyk from 2010 to 2015.
  • She was coached by Wim Fissette between 2015 and 2016, and in 2017, she was coached by Michael Joyce.
  •  In November 2018, Azarenka reunited with Fissette until December 2019,  In February 2020, Azarenka announced Dorian Descloix as her new coach, Azarenka split from Descloix in October 2021, instead choosing to work with Maxime Tchoutakian who is her current coach.
  • Her signature shot is her backhand down-the-line. Azarenka also possesses a strong forehand. Azarenka possesses a powerful first serve, enabling her to hit aces but Despite her strong first serve, her second serve is known for its volatility.
  •  Her inconsistencies on serve are balanced by her return game, with her being described as one of the greatest return players in the history of the WTA Tour. 

Career

  • Azarenka debuted on the ITF Junior Circuit in November 2003 in Israel, winning one doubles title with Olga Govortsova
  • Azarenka had a successful year in 2005, winning two junior Grand Slams, the Australian and the US championship. She ended the season as the junior world No. 1 and was named the 2005 World Champion by the ITF, becoming the first Belarusian to do so.
  • At the 2006 US Open, she had her first win over Myskina in the first round which was her best result in a Grand Slam event.
  • In 2007, at the US Open, Azarenka and Max Mirnyi won the title in mixed doubles.
  • In 2010, Azarenka competed in the Bank of the West Classic where she defeated Maria Sharapova in the final. This win propelled Azarenka to world No. 12.
  • As mentioned before, Victoria Azarenka is a former World Number one. She is also a two-time Australian Open champion, having won in 2012 and 2013.
  • In 2016 Azarenka won at the Indian Wells over tennis greats such as Serena Williams and Karolína Plíšková, thus enabling her ranking to rise to no 8.
  • In 2020, she won the Western and Southern Open. In the US Open final, she defeated Serena Williams in the semi-final, but in the final, she won the first set but lost to Naomi Osaka.
  • At the WTA 1000 2022 Qatar Total Open in Doha, she recorded her 500th tour-level match win defeating Yulia Putintseva in the first round.

Prize Money Earnings

She has earned a total of around $32,347,288 US$ from her participation in different championships. In fact, in  August 2013, Azarenka was the fourth highest-paid female athlete according to Forbes

Endorsements and Sponsors

  • Azarenka is endorsed by Nike for her clothing, footwear, and apparel on the court.
  • Red Bull entered into a deal with Azarenka in January 2013, making her the first tennis player sponsor for the company.
  • Azarenka has been sponsored by numerous racquet companies: from the start of her career, up to 2012, she was sponsored by Head and used the Head Extreme racquet. From 2012 and 2017, she was sponsored by Wilson and used the Wilson Ultra 100 racquet. In 2017, Azarenka signed an endorsement deal with Yonex and used the EZONE 100 racquet; she was endorsed by Wilson once again in 2020.
  • She was also endorsed by the investment company Instaforex between 2013 and 2016.
  • Citizen Watch manufactured an exclusive range of watches designed by Azarenka in 2013.
  • Other endorsement partners include American Express and Six Star Pro Nutrition;

Net Worth

Victoria’s total net worth as of today is estimated to be around  $20 million. 

Trivia

  • Azarenka is commonly regarded as a hard court specialist, due to the fact that all but one of her 21 singles titles have been won on hard courts.
  • She is often compared to Novak Djokovic due to her strong two-handed backhand, exceptional return game, mental strength, and preference for hard courts.
  • Her tennis idol is Steffi Graf.
  • Azarenka is fluent in Belarusian, Russian, and English, and has some fluency in French and Ukrainian.
  • Azarenka is known for her movement, speed, court coverage, footwork, and balance, allowing her to blend offense and defense effectively, and to execute her aggressive, yet controlled playing style effectively.