No.1 Spotlight: Victoria Azarenka
Published July 19, 2013 12:01
When Victoria Azarenka touched down in Australia at the start of the 2012 season, she was just another talented twentysomething waiting to make the transition from Top 10 player to Grand Slam contender. Three weeks, twelve wins and two titles later, her coming of age was complete.
The second of these titles, at the Australian Open, really separated her from the pack, as she finally delivered when it mattered most, outlasting crowd favorite Kim Clijsters in the semifinal before outclassing Maria Sharapova in the final. These glorious few weeks Down Under also propelled the Belarusian to the top of the rankings and provided the launch pad to further successes.
She has revelled in the spotlight, winning a further six titles - including the defense of her Australian Open crown - and establishing herself as a bona fide star to rival Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova at the top of the WTA.
• Winner of Grand Slam titles at the Australian Open in 2012 and 2013, also runner-up at 2012 US Open
• Also among her 16 WTA titles are triumphs at Miami in 2009 and 2011 and Indian Wells in 2012
• Rose to World No.1 for first time after triumph at 2012 Australian Open and ended up finishing season atop the rankings
• Won first Grand Slam mixed doubles title at 2007 US Open with Max Mirnyi. Won another mixed doubles Grand Slam with Bob Bryan at 2008 French Open and mixed doubles Olympic gold medal in 2012 with Mirnyi
• Set singles season prize money record of $7,923,920 in 2012
• One of 10 players to cross the $20 million mark in career prize money
• Member of Belarusian Fed Cup Team in 2005, 2007, 2009-11
• Won WTA's Fan Favorite Doubles Team Of The Year alongside Maria Kirilenko in 2011
• Won WTA's Diamond Aces Award in 2012