1
1
1

Kleybanova's Journey Inspires Jankovic

Alisa Kleybanova's journey back from illness and into the Top 100 again is a source of pride and inspiration for doubles partner Jelena Jankovic.

Published April 29, 2014 12:12

Kleybanova's Journey Inspires Jankovic
Alisa Kleybanova

While her Stuttgart challenge may have ended in quarterfinal defeat, Alisa Kleybanova knows that she has come out on top in a far more important battle over the past few years.

Three years ago, Kleybanova's charge up the rankings was placed on hold indefinitely when she was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma. Following a successful course of treatment the Russian briefly returned to the tour in 2012 before making a full-time comeback last May, easing herself back into competitive tennis with a mixture of the odd high-profile tournament and appearances on the ITF Circuit.

The Russian has stepped up her activity and competition level this year, playing eight events, with the highlights being last week's run in Stuttgart and a fourth round showing at Indian Wells.

In Stuttgart, her campaign was ended by doubles partner Jelena Jankovic, who prevailed over two closely contested sets. After the match, Jankovic was effusive in her praise of the strength Kleybanova has shown in not just overcoming her illness but also returning to compete at such a high level.

"She showed that she is such a strong girl and it's very inspirational to others that she was able to come after such a tough illness and it's even more amazing that she is here competing at such a high level against all of us here," Jankovic said.

Kleybaova's wins in Germany saw her return to the Top 100 and Jankovic is hoping the best is still to come. "I'm very proud of her and I'm a big fan of her. I cheer for her every time she plays against other people and I support her," she added. "She's a lovely girl. She's an amazing person which is more important than being a great player, at least in my opinion."

Share this page!

Related news

  • US Open Series: It's Almost Here...

    July 23, 2014
    We're just days away from the start of the 11th annual Emirates Airline US Open Series. Who won the first 10? Where are the top players playing this year? Read on!
  • Free Live Streaming From Nanchang

    July 23, 2014
    Watch live tennis all week from the WTA 125K Series event in Nanchang, where Chinese greats Peng Shuai and Zheng Jie are both in action. All here on wtatennis.com!
  • CNN Open Court: Kvitova's Journey

    July 23, 2014
    CNN Open Court turns back the clock with Petra Kvitova - footage from her early years, interviews from her hometown, a chat with her idol... see it all right here!
To The Top
3