Vera Zvonareva Coming Back - All The Way

Player Profiles
By Hiland Doolittle, July 1st, 2010
Vera Zvonareva Coming Back

Vera Zvonareva Coming Back

Encouraged by her mother, Vera Zvonareva began playing tennis for fun at age six. Her mother, Natalya Bykova, a Russian field hockey player who earned a bronze medal in the 1980 Olympics, enrolled the future star in the famed Russian State Academy of Physical Fitness.

Under the coaching eye of Ekaterina Ivanovna Kryuchkova, Zvonareva flourished against players in her own age bracket and against more experienced competitors. With a history of success, Vera decided to turn professional at the tender age of 16. Ever since, Vera has been regarded as one of those Russian tour players with great potential but unable to accomplish that signature, break-through win.

A talented performer on all surfaces, Vera’s serve has not developed as robustly as the rest of he game. Fellow competitors have noted that if Vera developed a service weapon like the Williams sisters possess, she will be ready to contend for Grand Slam titles.

In 2009, it seemed Vera’s career had finally peaked. She began the season with an impressive 20-3 won-lost record before incurring a devastating ankle injury that forced her to miss the entire clay court season. Displeased with her comfort level on the tour’s hard surfaces, Vera finally conceded to microscopic ankle surgery in early November.

During her 2009 hot-streak, Vera won her most prestigious premier event at Indian Wells. Her 9h career title came on the heels of her strongest Grand Slam appearance, a semifinal loss to Dinara Safina in Australia. Vera started the 2010 season well, earning her 10th tour title at Pattaya City.

Vera broke into the top 100 in 2003 and rose to the top 20 for the first time in 2006. In 2007, Zvonareva ended the season in the top ten and remained there until her 2009 injury. Currently ranked 21st on the tour, Vera appears to have her game back in high gear and is regarded as a dangerous opponent. Her 4th round appearance at the 2010 Australian Open equaled her best Grand Slam performance prior to her 2010 semifinal Wimbledon appearance, where she will be favored to defeat longshot Tsvetana Pironkova.

Winner Poker

Currently, the husky Russian does not have a coach, but she has worked hard on her conditioning. Vera has a strong three set record. That tough physical and mental toughness showed itself in the gutsy quarterfinal win over the bookmaker favorite Kim Clijsters at the 2010 Wimbledon. After dropping the first set, Vera revved up her serve and relied on her powerful two-handed backhand to edge the former world number one and current U.S. Open Champion.



No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.