Monday, April 20, 2009

Ana Ivanovic

Date of birth: 1987-11-06
Birthplace: Belgrade, Serbia
Height: 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Nationality: Serbian
Profession: tennis player 

Ana Ivanović (Serbian Cyrillic: Ана Ивановић, born November 6, 1987, in Belgrade, Serbia, then Yugoslavia) is a former World No.1 Serbian tennis player. She is the current World No.5 in the WTA Tour and the reigning French Open champion. She was also the runner-up in singles at the 2007 French Open

Personal life

Ivanović's mother, Dragana who is a lawyer, attends all of her daughter's matches. Her father, Miroslav, a self-employed businessman, attends as many events as he possibly can. Ana has a younger brother, Miloš, with whom she loves to play basketball. Other hobbies include shopping, watching movies and playing Sudoku. She chooses not to have a permanent coach. Aside from her tennis career, Ivanović also studies finance at a university in Belgrade, and Spanish in her spare time. Her inspiration to begin playing was Monica Seles, and she also admires Roger Federer.
On September 8, 2007, Ivanović became a UNICEF National Ambassador for Serbia, alongside Aleksandar Đorđević and Emir Kusturica. She takes a special interest in the fields of education and child protection. Ivanović visited a primary school in Serbia during her inauguration and said: "I'm also looking forward to going into the classroom and meeting many kids."
Ivanović is a fan of all sport clubs competing under the name of Partizan Belgrade.
Ivanović is friends with former doubles partner Maria Kirilenko, as well as other professional tennis players Daniela Hantuchová, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Sanja Ančić, Rafael Nadal, Tatiana Golovin and fellow Serbians Novak Djokovic (whom she has known since the age of 5) and Janko Tipsarević
Ivanović confirmed in November 2008 that she was romantically involved with Spanish tennis player Fernando Verdasco however, the relationship apparently ended in January 2009.


Ivanović endorsed Nike apparel and shoes at the beginning of her professional career, but at the beginning of 2006, she switched to rival Adidas. She started with the Wilson HTour racquet, before switching to the nCode nBlade. Since the beginning of 2008, Ivanović has been using the Yonex RQiS-1TOUR racquet. She has now begun using the RQiS 1 Tour XL racquet.


Ivanović picked up a racket at the age of 5 after watching Monica Seles, a fellow Yugoslavian, at Roland Garros on television. She started her promising career at the age of 5, after memorizing the number of a local tennis clinic from an ad on TV. During her training she encountered the NATO bombings in 1999, where she would have to train in the morning to avoid them. Later on she admitted she would train in an abandoned swimming pool in the winter, as there were no other facilities. When she was 15, Ivanović spent four hours in the locker room crying after a defeat - the first that her new manager had watched - because she thought that Dan Holzmann was going to drop her because she felt that she wasn't good enough to become a professional tennis player. He has stayed as her manager to this day.


Ivanović first caught the eye of the tennis world when she reached the final of the Junior Wimbledon tournament in 2004, losing to Kateryna Bondarenko. In 2004, she also went 26-0 on the ITF circuit, and won all 5 events that she entered, two of them as a qualifier. Her first professional breakthrough occurred in October 2004 when she took Venus Williams to two tie breaks before losing 7–6(11), 7–6(6) in the second round of the Zürich Open in Zürich, Switzerland, in which she held several set points in both sets; this was after a 3-set battle with then-ranked Number 27 Tatiana Golovin. She followed that up with a quarterfinal showing in Luxembourg the following week.


Ivanović won her first career singles title, as a qualifier, in Canberra, Australia. Her ranking continued to rise after wins over Svetlana Kuznetsova, Nadia Petrova, and Vera Zvonareva, all of whom were top 10 players. Ivanović lost to Amélie Mauresmo at the Australian Open, Doha, and Key Biscayne, Florida. However, Ivanović defeated Mauresmo in the third round of the French Open. Ivanović eventually reached the quarterfinals of that tournament, where she lost to Petrova. Later in the year, Ivanović reached the semifinals of the Zurich Open and Generali Ladies Linz, losing in both tournaments to Patty Schnyder.


Ivanović started off 2006 by playing at the Hopman Cup with fellow Serbian Novak Djokovic where the pair narrowly missed the final. To start off her WTA year she played at the Medibank International in Sydney where she once again defeated Amélie Mauresmo, this time in straight sets, before falling to Svetlana Kuznetsova in the quarterfinals.
At the Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, Ivanović defeated Anna Chakvetadze 6–3, 6–3 before falling to Elena Dementieva in three sets. In the clay court season, she defeated Patty Schnyder in straight sets at the J & S Cup in Warsaw before losing to Anna Chakvetadze after a three-set battle. Retiring against Na Li at the Qatar Telecom German Open in Berlin while leading a set, she was unable to reproduce her record from the previous year, falling to Anastasia Myskina in straight sets in the third round of Roland Garros. She progressed to the Round of 16 at Wimbledon but lost to eventual champion Amélie Mauresmo, 6–3 6–4.
Ivanović made her breakthrough in August when she defeated former world number one and comeback queen Martina Hingis in the final of the Canada Masters in Montreal, in which she won 6–2, 6–3. This ultimately led to her winning the United States Open Series ahead of Kim Clijsters and Maria Sharapova. At the US Open she lost to the resurgent Serena Williams. After some early round losses to Olga Poutchkova at the Wismilak International in Bali and Venus Williams at the FORTIS Championships in Luxembourg, Ivanović took a few weeks off to tend to a recurring injury in her right shoulder. She made her return in Linz and made it to the quarterfinals of Generali Ladies, before losing to Maria Sharapova in two tight sets. To finish off her year she had a disappointing run at the Gaz de France Stars in Hasselt, Belgium, as she lost to Dutch player Michaëlla Krajicek.
Ivanović also played 9 tournaments in doubles this year, teaming up with Maria Kirilenko and Sania Mirza. Ivanović and Kirilenko made 2 semi-finals and a final; they ended the year at number 17 in the annual Race to the Championships.
Ivanović finished off 2006 as the 14th best ranked woman in the world. In the doubles, she crept up to finish at number 51 in the world, an improvement of her Top 200 finish in 2005.


Ivanović's first tournament was the Mondial Hardcourts in Gold Coast, Australia, falling to Shahar Pe'er in the quarterfinals 5–7, 6–4, 6–4. Her next tournament was the Sydney Medibank International, where she again lost in the quarterfinals, this time to Nicole Vaidišová 6–4, 6–2.
Ivanović was the 13th seed at the Australian Open. She defeated Polish player Agnieszka Radwańska in the second round but lost to World No. 22 Vera Zvonareva in the third round 6–1, 6–2. Immediately after the tournament, Ivanović announced via her official website that she had terminated the services of her then-coach, David Taylor.
At the Tier I Toray Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo, Ivanović reached her third career final, defeating Jelena Janković in the quarterfinals. In the semifinals, Maria Sharapova retired from the match while trailing 6–1, 0–1. Ivanović then lost to Martina Hingis in the final 6–4, 6–2.
Ivanović then left for Europe and played the tournament in Antwerp, where she lost in the quarterfinals to Kim Clijsters.
Ivanović's next two tournaments were Tier I events in the United States. At the Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, California, she was upset in the fourth round by Sybille Bammer. At the Sony Ericsson Open in Key Biscayne, Florida, Ivanović was upset by Yaroslava Shvedova in the second round.
The following week, Ivanović began her clay court season at the Bausch & Lomb Championships in Amelia Island, Florida. She defeated Janković in the quarterfinals before falling to Tatiana Golovin 6–4, 3–6, 6–4. In her first appearance at the Family Circle Cup in Charleston, South Carolina the following week, Ivanović lost to Vera Zvonareva in the third round.
Ivanović then returned to Europe to play two red clay court tournaments. In Berlin at the Qatar Telecom German Open, she won her first Tier I clay court title. She defeated Patty Schnyder in the quarterfinals and World No. 4 Svetlana Kuznetsova in the final. However, Ivanović injured her ankle during the final, which forced her to withdraw from the Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome. The win in Berlin propelled her into the top ten of the WTA Rankings for the first time, at World No. 8.
Ivanović then headed into the French Open on a six-match winning streak. She increased this streak to twelve by reaching the final. She won her first three matches with the loss of only nine games. In her second career quarterfinal at Roland Garros, Ivanović defeated World No. 3 Kuznetsova 6–0, 3–6, 6–1. She then beat World No. 2 Sharapova in the semifinals 6–2, 6–1. In the final, Ivanović attempted to win her first Grand Slam singles title and complete a sweep of the top three players in the world. Three-time winner Justine Henin, however, won the error-strewn match 6–1, 6–2. Later on, Ivanović admitted that the idea of being in the final of a Grand Slam tournament overwhelmed her.
With the clay court season over, Ivanović played the Ordina Open on grass in 's-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands, losing in the quarterfinals to Daniela Hantuchová. At Wimbledon, Ivanović defeated World No. 9 Nadia Petrova in the fourth round 6–1, 2–6, 6–4. In the quarterfinals, Ivanović saved three match points to defeat Vaidišová 4–6, 6–2, 7–5. In the semifinals, three-time former Wimbledon champion Venus Williams defeated Ivanović 6–2, 6–4.

A persistent knee injury, sustained at Wimbledon, required Ivanović to withdraw from Serbian Fed Cup competition with Slovakia and two lead up events to the US Open. Ivanović returned to the tour at the East West Bank Classic in Carson, California. In the semifinals, Ivanović played her country woman Janković for the third time that year. Ivanović saved two match points before winning the match 4–6, 6–3, 7–5. In the final, Ivanović defeated Petrova to win the fourth singles title of her career, which propelled her to a career high ranking of World No. 4.
Ivanović next attempted to defend her title at the Tier I Rogers Cup in Toronto, Canada. However, her title defence lasted only 65 minutes as she lost to Chinese qualifier Yan Zi 6–3, 6–1.
In Ivanović's first three matches at the US Open, she lost only 10 games. Venus Williams then eliminated her for the second consecutive time at a Grand Slam tournament, 6–4, 6–2.
Ivanović then returned to Europe for three tournaments. At the Tier II (now changed to Tier III) Luxembourg Championships, Ivanović qualified for the WTA Tour Championships as she reached the semifinals. In the final, Ivanović rallied from 6–3, 3–0 down to defeat Hantuchová in two hours and 25 minutes. This was her fifth career title. At the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart, Ivanović lost to Ukrainian qualifier Kateryna Bondarenko in the second round 6–2, 1–6, 6–3. Playing at what Ivanović considers her home event, the Tier I Zürich Open, she lost to Golovin in the second round 6–3, 6–1.
To end the year, Ivanović played the WTA Tour Championships in Madrid, Spain. Seeded fourth and assigned to the Red Group during the round robin phase, she defeated World No. 2 Kuznetsova in a close three-set match and Hantuchová in straight sets. Sharapova then defeated Ivanović in the final match of the round robin 6–1, 6–2. Because she finished second in her group, Ivanović played World No. 1 Henin in the semifinals, which the Belgian won 6–4, 6–4.
Ivanović finished the year with a career-high ranking of World No. 4, a mere 14 points behind Janković.


Ivanović started the year by participating in an exhibition tournament in Hong Kong, where she was seeded first. She lost to Elena Dementieva in the quarterfinals, 6–4, 1–6, 6–3. Ivanović then entered the Silver Group, a competition among all first match losers. Based on her world ranking, she was favored to win that competition; however, she lost to World No. 45 Shuai Peng 6–1, 6–3.
Ivanović's next tournament was the Tier II Medibank International in Sydney, which attracted 12 of the top 15 ranked women. After trailing 5–2 in the third set of her second round match, Ivanović defeated Frenchwoman Virginie Razzano, 6–1, 2–6, 7–5. In the quarterfinals, Ivanović defeated Slovenian Katarina Srebotnik but then lost to Justine Henin in the semifinals, 6–2, 2–6, 6–4. This was the first time in four meetings that Ivanović took a set off Henin.

Ivanović entered the Australian Open as the fourth seed and reached the quarterfinals for the first time. There, Ivanović defeated Venus Williams for the first time 7–6, 6–4. In her semifinal against Daniela Hantuchová, Ivanović prevailed, 0–6, 6–3, 6–4, to reach her second career Grand Slam singles final, after having trailed, 6–0, 2–0. She then lost to Maria Sharapova in straight sets. Because of her performance at this tournament, her ranking rose to World No. 2, the highest of her career at the time.
In Serbia's Fed Cup Europe/Africa Zone Group I D round robin tie against Poland in Budapest, Ivanović defeated World No. 215 Urszula Radwańska in straight sets. In Serbia's second round robin tie against Romania, Ivanović defeated Monica Niculescu 5–7, 6–4, 7–5 and then teamed with Jelena Janković to win the deciding doubles rubber against the Romanian team 2–6, 7–6(3), 7–6(2). In the promotion playoff, Ivanović beat Renee Reinhard of the Netherlands 6–2, 3–6, 6–3, as Serbia advanced to the World Group II playoffs in April.
Ivanović was the top-seeded player at the Qatar Total Open in Doha for the first time in a Tier I tournament. She defeated Olga Govortsova in the second round but subsequently withdrew from the tournament because of an ankle injury suffered during that match. The following week at the Barclays Dubai Tennis Championships, the third-seeded Ivanović lost in the quarterfinals to the eighth-seeded Dementieva 5–7, 6–3, 6–3.
In March at the Tier I Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, California, the top-seeded Ivanović defeated Janković in the semifinals, 7–6(3), 6–3, before defeating Svetlana Kuznetsova in the final. At the Tier I Sony Ericsson Open in Key Biscayne, Florida, Ivanović was the second-seeded player but lost to Lindsay Davenport in the third round in straight sets.
Ivanović was the defending champion and second-seeded player at the Tier I Qatar Telecom German Open in Berlin. She lost, however, to Dementieva in the semifinals, 6–2, 7–5, for the fourth time in four career matches. At the Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome, Ivanović was the top seed but lost in the second round to Bulgarian qualifier Tsvetana Pironkova, 6–4, 5–7, 6–2.
Ivanović was the second-seeded player at the French Open. She defeated World No. 3 Janković in the semifinals 6–4, 3–6, 6–4, guaranteeing that Ivanović would become the World No. 1, regardless of whether she won the final. Ivanović then went on to defeat Dinara Safina in the final, winning her first Grand Slam singles title.
At Wimbledon, Ivanović was the top-seeded player and defeated French veteran player Nathalie Dechy in the second round 6–7(2), 7–6(3), 10–8. The match took 3 hours, 24 minutes to play, with Ivanović saving two match points while trailing 5–4 in the second set and Dechy saving three match points in the third set before succumbing. Ivanović then lost in the third round to unseeded wildcard Zheng Jie of China, who was ranked World No. 133, 6–1, 6–4.
At the Rogers Cup in Montreal, Ivanović was the top seed and received a bye in the first round, but fell in the third round to Austrian teen Tamira Paszek 6-2, 1-6, 6-2. Ivanović told reporters after the match that she had been bothered by a sore thumb throughout the tournament, sustained two weeks prior to the event while practicing.
Following a string of poor results and failure to defend her title at the East West Bank Classic in Los Angeles, Ivanović officially relinquished her World No. 1 ranking on August 11 to fellow Serbian Janković. Ivanović had held the World No. 1 ranking for nine consecutive weeks.
At the Summer Olympics in Beijing, Ivanović was scheduled to meet 53rd-seeded Mariya Koryttseva of Ukraine in the first round. However, Ivanović withdrew from the Olympics on August 10, citing a recurrent thumb injury sustained during training after Wimbledon. Seeded first at the event, Ivanović described the decision as "one of the worst moments of her career".
Because of Janković's loss to Safina at the 2008 Summer Olympics, Ivanović reclaimed her World No. 1 ranking on August 18, 2008, and was the top-seeded player at the US Open. At the US Open, Ivanović lost her second round match in three sets to Julie Coin, who was an unseeded qualifier and ranked 187 places lower than her. The defeat was the earliest by a top seed in the open era at the US Open since Billie Jean King's third round loss to Julie Heldman in 1973. Because of her early loss, Janković's World No. 1 ranking was given to Serena Williams. Ivanović dropped to World No. 3.
In her first match since the US Open, which was the Toray Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo, Ivanović was upset by Nadia Petrova of Russia in three sets, bringing her win-loss record since her maiden Grand Slam win at the French Open to 4-4. Ivanović later told the press that she was "just happy to be back injury-free" and that she needed to "play more matches get back into rhythm".
In her next tournament, the China Open in Beijing, Ivanović beat World No. 18 Alizé Cornet of France in the second round after receiving a first round bye. The win was Ivanović's first straight sets victory since her opening round win at Wimbledon. She was, however, defeated by Zheng Jie in the quarterfinals 7–6, 2–6, 6–4.
At the Kremlin Cup in Moscow, Ivanović played her first doubles match on the WTA Tour since June 2007, teaming up with Francesca Schiavone to defeat the Spanish/Russian pairing of Nuria Llagostera Vives and Elena Vesnina 7–6, 6–7, 10–5. Ivanović lost in singles' competition to Slovak teenager Dominika Cibulková in the second round, 7–6 in the final set, despite having two match points of her own at 5–4. Later that day in the doubles event, Ivanović and Schiavone were defeated by top seeds Cara Black and Liezel Huber, 10–7 in the Champions' tiebreak after losing the first set 6–2, and winning the second 6–4.

In the last edition of the Zurich Open in Switzerland, Ivanović defeated World No. 16 Marion Bartoli in the second round and then came through against Czech teenager Petra Kvitová in the quarterfinals. It was the first time Ivanović had won back-to-back matches since the first two rounds of Wimbledon, her first in straight sets since the French Open. However, in her sixth semifinal of the year, Ivanović lost to Venus Williams 4–6, 6–3, 6–4.
At the Generali Ladies Linz in Austria, Ivanović was the top seed. After receiving a bye in the first round, Ivanović defeated Sybille Bammer in the second round and Flavia Pennetta in the quarterfinals. In the semifinals, Ivanović overcame Polish teenager Agnieszka Radwańska in a match that took over two hours to complete 6–2, 3–6, 7–5 to reach her first WTA Tour final since her maiden Grand Slam title at the French Open and her rise to the World No. 1 ranking. Ivanović then went on to defeat second-seeded Vera Zvonareva in the final.
At the year-ending Sony Ericsson Championships in Doha, Qatar, Ivanović was the fourth seed. In her first round robin match, she was defeated by World No. 1 Janković 6–3, 6–4. Her next match was against Zvonareva, whom she lost to, 6–3, 6–7(5), 6–4. She withdrew from her final match against Kuznetsova because of a virus.


Ivanović started the year at the Brisbane International in Australia. Ivanović defeated Petra Kvitova in the first round and Roberta Vinci in the second round 6–7(4), 7–5, 6–1 after saving two match points in the second set. Ivanović then lost to former World No. 1 Amélie Mauresmo 6–3, 6–2.
At the Australian Open, Ivanović was seeded fifth. In the first and second rounds, she won her matches in straight sets but lost to Russian Alisa Kleybanova in the third round 7–5, 6–7(5), 6–2. 

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