Name: Anna Kournikova
Height: 170 centimetres (5'8")
Weight: 55 kg (123 lbs)
Date Of Birth: June 7, 1981
Place Of Birth: Moscow, Russia
Lives: Miami, Florida, USA
Coach: Pavel Slozil
Russian-born Anna Kournikova left Moscow at the age of 9 to come to
Nick Bollettieri's Tennis Academy in Florida, USA - the same academy
which has also produced Monica Seles and Andre Agassi.
She was the world's topped-ranked junior at the end of 1995, shortly
after Martina Hingis joined the professional ranks. Kournikova herself
turned professional in 1996, and competed in her first grand slam at the
US Open that year. She performed exceptionally well, defeating seeded
players before finally falling to eventual champion Steffi Graf in the
In 1997, she affirmed her position amongst the world's top players,
highlighted by a semi-final appearance at her first Wimbledon as a
professional. In 1998 she further surged up the rankings, with the highlight
being an appearance in the final of the prestigious Lipton Championships,
defeating four top 10 players consecutively along the way. Soon after, she
scored her first victory over world number 1 Hingis, and just prior to
Wimbledon she broke into the world Top 10 for the first time in her career.
A thumb injury before Wimbledon (suffered in a match where she defeated
Graf) ruled her out of tournaments for the next few months, and she has
since had a tough time regaining her momentum. 1999 began with a
controversial Australian Open, her play marred by poor form with her service.
However, she did manage to make the 4th round in singles (her best result)
as well as winning the doubles championships with Hingis as her partner.
Anna says her game wasn't modelled after any one player, although lists
Graf and Seles as players she has learnt from, watching television. Now
at 18 years of age, she is developing her power game and exhibiting
some fearful groundstrokes coupled with superb court mentality.
Anna is indeed superstar material, with glamourous looks (she says if
not for tennis, her passion would be acting) and an aggressive all-court
game to match. In fact, she has had an agent since the age of 10.
She is currently on the verge of the world Top 10, and others forsee
her and Hingis (along with the Williams sisters) battling it out for world
number 1 in the not-too-distant future. Regardless, Anna Kournikova
will play a great role in the future of women's tennis.