Jelena Ostapenko is a Latvian professional tennis player, she may just be 21 but has far distinguished herself from other players. She won her first professional title in 2017 and is ranked Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) No. 12 as at July 2018. Jelena has distinguished herself with her highly aggressive style of play characterized with powerful inside-out groundstrokes and a tendency to aim for the lines, play with unmatchable confidence as well as use her backhand as her strongest weapon.
The 2017 French Open champion was born in Riga, the capital and the largest city In Lativa on the 8th day of June 1997. Her birth name is Jelena Ostapenko. However, her parents would have loved to give their beloved daughter a different moniker, Alona, an ethnically Ukranian name. Being Lativans, child naming follows a custom of choosing a name that appears in the Latvian names calendar, thus Alona was overruled and Jelena was chosen instead. She is nevertheless known to her family and friends and a number of fans as well as a fraction of the sports community as Alona.
Her preferred moniker, Alona is being considered by the Latvian government to be put in the Latvian name calendar after her French Open win.
Jelena was born in an athletic home with a mother who is a tennis coach and a father who played professional football for a Ukrainian club. She made her debut in the game at the age of 5 after her mother discovered her talent for tennis two years earlier. Her tennis idols were Serena Williams and Ernests Gulbis. Along with playing tennis, she also started dancing at the same age and was a professional ballroom dancer for seven years. She competed in the National Latvian Championships for Ballroom Dancing and could dance about 10 dances.
After juggling the two activities until the age of 12, the time finally came for her to make a choice. Jelena chose tennis over dancing which she considers closer to her heart and has yielded better results. The tennis standout is, however, grateful for the years she spent dancing and credits it for her good coordination and skilled footwork.
Jelene competed in and won the singles event at the junior Wimbledon Championships in 2014. She was ranked world No. 2 junior player in September 2014. In the same year, she was awarded a wildcard and made her WTA Tour main-draw debut at the Tashkent Open. In 2015, her career saw its first WTA final at the Coupe Banque Nationals although she lost to the German player, Annika Beck ending the season as world No. 79.
The following season, Jelena was seeded in the singles for the first time in her Grand Slam career at the French Open albeit she dropped her opening to Naomi Osaka. She debuted in the Olympic at the 2016 Summer Olympics but lost in the first round.
2017 was a remarkable year for the tennis player as it marked a number of epoch events in her career. At the French Open, with a world ranking of No. 47, she reached her first ever Grand Slam semifinals; the first Latvian female player to do so as well as the first teenager in a decade to reach semifinals after Ana Ivanovic in 2007. She eventually got to the finals as the first unseeded female player to play in the final of the French Open since 1983, and the first Latvian player to reach the final of a major.
Jelena played the final against Simona Halep and emerged the winner. In the list of her firsts, she became the first Latvian player to win a Grand Slam singles tournament and the first unseeded woman to win the French Open since 1933 as well as the first player since 1997 to win his or her first career title at a Grand Slam. Her predecessor was Gustavo Kuerten who won the title on her birthday.
In 2018, Jelena Ostapenko reached her first Wimbledon semi-final but lost to the German, Angelique Kerber who triumphed 6-3, 6-3 on July 12. In her career profile, she has also played as a member of Latvia’s Fed Cup team and has won seven singles and eight doubles titles on the ITF tour.
Jelena Ostapenko Family, Parents
Jelena is a phenomenal player, no doubt but she mentions that her parents play the main role in the game leaving us to wonder who her folks are. Here are the details. She was born to a former footballer Jevgēnijs Ostapenko and a tennis coach Jeļena Jakovļeva. Her father played professionally for FC Metalurh Zaporizhya, Zaporizhia, Ukraine. She has a half-brother, Maksim Ostapenko who lives in Los Angeles, US and graduated from an art school there.
Her mother is her full-time coach while her father doubles as her fitness trainer. She was coached by the two-time French Open doubles champion Anabel Medina Garrigues in 2017 and now David Taylor for the majors.
Jelena Ostapenko Height, Weight, Body Measurements
She is 5′ 10″ (1.77 m) and weighs 68 kg (150 lbs). Her body measurements are not known.
Jelena Ostapenko Facts
- Her favorite shots are serve and backhand; favorite surfaces are grass and hard; favorite tournament is Wimbledon.
- Jelena enjoys spending time with her parents and dog (Juljeta), listening to music, going out with friends to movies, reading, and watching hockey on ice.
- She speaks Latvian, Russian, and English.