Anabel & Slava's Blossoming Relationship
Published April 16, 2014 12:12
Andrea Petkovic marked her recent victory in Charleston by reintroducing the tennis world to the Petko dance.
Eager not to be outdone, doubles champions Anabel Medina Garrigues and Yaroslava Shvedova also got in on the act. And while their Slavic interpretation of the flamenco did not create quite the same buzz as the German's dance moves, it was further evidence of the Spanish-Kazakhstani duo's blossoming relationship.
"I watched a Russian comedy video before the final and they were making fun of the Spanish dancing," Shvedova said when quizzed on their new post-match celebration. "Then I showed it to Anabel and we said let's do our own version. Olé, like a traditional Spanish dance!
"Because she is Spanish and after this year I'm almost half-Spanish too."
After a couple of brief, but successful, outings together in recent years, this January, Medina Garrigues and Shvedova decided to get together on a more permanent basis. Early results were mixed, but with each passing tournament the two, who have won 34 WTA doubles titles between them, have steadily improved.
"Well, we are really happy that we started playing in Australia together, and we are trying to play all year together," Medina Garrigues said in Charleston. "We feel that every tournament we are playing together we are getting better.
"In Australia we didn't play so good, but we keep going; and Indian Wells we won one round. In Miami we reached the quarterfinal, and we lost with match points, and here we won the tournament. So we are seeing that we are improving, so we are very happy."
Medina Garriues hopes this progress will continue into the clay court season, a time of year that has historically proved fruitful for both her and her partner. Underpinning their hopes of domination on the dirt will be their work ethic and communication both on and off the court.
"We are good friends. We are having fun always and communicating very well and willing to work and improve our game," Medina Garrigues added. "So every time we play, we always talk and try to get the best things out of the matches and improve for the next match.
"Hopefully this will continue in the coming tournaments and we'll get better and better."