Career High
Jan 29 1996
Prize Money
0 / 0

More on Maleeva...


Youngest of three sisters (Manuela and Katerina) ... Participated in opposition movement against communism in Bulgaria ... Favorite places are the Bulgarian mountains and Black Sea ... Likes to read books on astronomy and science ... Favorite authors are Milan Kundera, Kurt Vonnegut and Jordan Radichkov ... Favorite movies are Bowling For Columbine, Monsoon Wedding, No ManÆs Land and Son of the Bride ... Favors music by Radiohead, Asian Dub Foundation and Tori Amos ... High point of career (and life) was regaining her health and returning to the Tour in 1999 ... Named Moscow 2002 win as best moment of her tennis career ... Likes to spend time with her three nieces and five nephews ... Co-owns a clothing company (Capasca) which makes men's, women's and home decoration ( ... With her mother and sisters has built a tennis club in Sofia ( ... has an initiative for planting trees in Sofia ( ... Enjoys drawing and sewing.

Official Web site:

Career Highlights

Winner (10): 2003 - Birmingham; 2002 - Moscow; 2001 - Budapest; 1999 - Pattaya City, ITF/Cergy-Pontoise-FRA; 1995 - Chicago, Moscow, Oakland; 1994 - Moscow, Zurich; 1992 - San Marino.
Finalist (11): 2004 - Tokyo [Pan Pacific]; 2002 - Luxembourg; 2001 - Nice, Leipzig; 2000 - Luxembourg; 1996 - Madrid; 1995 - Hilton Head, German Open, Leipzig; 1993 - Brisbane; 1991 - Bol.

Winner (5): 2005 - Gold Coast (w/Likhovtseva); 2003 - Miami (w/L. Huber), Warsaw (w/L. Huber); 2002 - Antwerp (w/Schnyder); 1991 - Bol (w/L. Golarsa).
Finalist (7): 2004 - Gold Coast (w/Huber), Tokyo [Pan Pacific] (w/Likhovtseva); 2002 - Æs-Hertogenbosch (w/Lamade); 1993 - Osaka (w/Maleeva-Fragniere), Barcelona (w/Maleeva-Fragniere); 1990 - Filderstadt (w/K. Maleeva), Brighton (w/K. Maleeva).

Bulgarian Fed Cup Team 1991-95, 1998, 2002-03, 2005. Bulgarian Olympic Team 1992, 1996, 2004.

Career in Review

1989 - Turned professional after 14th birthday in April; reached final in first professional tournament at ITF/Bari-ITA, losing in third-set tie-break

1990 - In Grand Slam debut, qualified for Roland Garros and reached 3r

1991 - Reached first Grand Slam 4r at Australian Open, l. to sister Katerina; reached career-first Tour final at Bol (l. to Cecchini 75 third set)

1992 - Won first Tour event at San Marino, signifying first time three sisters won a professional tournament; handed Navratilova her earliest Grand Slam exit (in 16 years) with 2r win at US Open; went on to reach QF, her best Grand Slam result to date; forced to retire with injury in QF, trailing sister Manuela 62 53

1993 - Most consistent year in Grand Slams, reaching 4r at Australian, Roland Garros and US Open and 3r at Wimbledon; runner-up in Brisbane; qualified for season-ending Championships (l. 1r)

1994 - Won consecutive titles at Moscow and Zurich; upset No. 3 Navratilova in Chicago QF, her earliest loss at the tournament since 1974; took Graf to 3s in Hamburg QF (only second player to take a set off Graf in 32 matches) and reached 4r at Australian and US Opens; qualified for season-ending Championships but withdrew due to rib stress fracture

1995 - Career-best season to date, winning three titles in a single season for the first time (Chicago, Moscow and Oakland); finished season at No. 6, her best season-ending ranking; qualified for season-ending Championships for third straight year (l. 1r)

1996 - Reached career-high No. 4 in late January; d. No. 2 seed Sanchez-Vicario en route to Madrid final (l. to Novotna); pushed No. 1 seed Majoli to 3s in Paris [Indoors] SF; reached QF at Tokyo [Pan Pacific], Rome, Canadian Open and Leipzig; in Grand Slam play, reached 4r at Roland Garros, d. Raymond in 1r 61 67 12-10 (saving 1 mp); lost to Tauziat 97 third set in Wimbledon 2r; represented Bulgaria at Olympics, reaching singles 3r

1997 - Reached SF of Hannover (d. world No. 10 Habsudova), QF at Linz, Birmingham, Canadian Open and Filderstadt and 3r at Wimbledon, US Open and Miami

1998 - Underwent shoulder surgery in June, forcing her off the Tour for the next 11 months; best results in her shortened season were QF showing in Sydney and a three-set win over No. 13 A. Huber in 1r of Tokyo [Pan Pacific]

1999 - Finished season ranked No. 89 having been unranked from February until June; returned to Tour in May after June 1998 shoulder surgery; in fourth tournament of comeback, reached SF at Æs-Hertogenbosch, her first Tour SF in 28 months; won first tournaments in four years in her last two events of the season for a 13-match win streak; ranked No. 131, qualified for Pattaya City, d. No. 5 seed Panova in 2r (saving 5 mp) and No.4 Kremer in final; won ITF/Cergy Pontoise-FRA without losing a set

2000 - Achieved highest season-end ranking in four years (No. 22) following 1998 shoulder surgery; reached 14th career singles final at Luxembourg (l. to Capriati in 3s); played all four Grand Slams for first time since 1994, reaching 3r at Roland Garros; scored two Top 10 wins (No. 9 Halard-Decugis at Gold Coast and No. 9 Sanchez-Vicario at Moscow; not incl. retirement of No. 2 Davenport at Canadian Open)

2001 - Finished inside Top 20 for first time since 1996, winning eighth career Tour singles title (Budapest); reached two more finals at Nice (d. world No. 3 V. Williams en route for best win since d. world No. 3 Pierce at 1995 Berlin) and Leipzig (l. to Clijsters); qualified for season-ending Championships for first time in six years, l. 1r to world No. 1 Capriati in 3s; reached Wimbledon 4r for first time; stretched No. 1 Hingis to 3s twice (in Tokyo [Pan Pacific] and Filderstadt)

2002 - First Top 15 finish since 1995; won first Tier I title in eight years at Moscow, d. three of tournamentÆs Top 4 seeds, world No. 2 V. Williams 76 third set, No. 7 Mauresmo in SF and No. 8 Davenport 76 third set in final, becoming fourth of five unseeded Tier I champions in last 22 years; only third player in past five years to d. both Davenport and V. Williams at the same event; reached Australian Open 4r for first time in eight years (l. to V. Williams); reached final of Luxembourg (l. to Clijsters) and SF at Strasbourg (l. to eventual champion Farina Elia); avenged that loss to d. Farina Elia for first time in five years to reach Wimbledon 4r, equaling career-best performance there of a year earlier; reached QF at Antwerp (l. No. 2 seed Henin) and won doubles title (w/Schnyder), her second career Tour doubles title (1991 Bol w/Golarsa); also quarterfinalist at Birmingham, Æs-Hertogenbosch and Quebec City; qualified for season-ending Championships for fifth time (fourth appearance) d. Hantuchova for first-ever win in the event (l. in QF to Capriati in 3s); finished season with career-best $615,813

2003 - Won 10th Tour singles title at Birmingham (career-first on grass, for at least one title on all surfaces; d. Asagoe in final); on June 23, rose to No. 11, and twice during the season was one match from reentering the worldÆs Top 10 - in Eastbourne QF, led Farina Elia 75 30 before falling, a win that would have put her back in Top 10 for first time in seven years to the day; at Leipzig, had Clijsters beaten Myskina in SF, Maleeva would have ended seven-year, three-month absence from Top 10 (a would-be record, surpassing CapriatiÆs seven years, 0 months); after surrendering Moscow title in 1r to Safina, fell from No. 11 to No. 21; also reached QF at Doha, Los Angeles and Filderstadt (d. world No. 10 Rubin for first Top 10 win since 2002 season-ending championships); in doubles, won two doubles titles w/L. Huber at Miami (first time playing together) and Warsaw; runner-up at Berlin and Canadian Open (both w/L. Huber)

2004 - Tenth Top 30 finish, reaching fifth career Tier I singles final; as unseeded No.31 at Tokyo [Pan Pacific], won 400th career match vs. Granville in 2r and d. No.9 Sugiyama in QF en route to final (first at a Tier I since 2002 Moscow), then l. to No.2 seed Davenport; made QF at Gold Coast (l. to top seed Sugiyama), Antwerp (l. to No.2 Clijsters), Warsaw (d. No.17 Schnyder in 2r, l. to No.2 seed S.Williams), Eastbourne (overcame 63 51 deficit to d. 2003 finalist Martinez in 2r, l. to top seed Mauresmo), Montreal (d. No.13 Suarez in in 3r, l. to No.3 seed Myskina) and Hasselt (l. to Clijsters); reached 4r at Roland Garros (l. to Mauresmo) and Wimbledon (l. to Sprem), both equal-best performances; represented Bulgaria at Olympics in singles (l. 2r); reached career-high doubles ranking of No.13 on February 2; withdrew from Doha with right shoulder injury.

2005 - Season highlighted by QF finishes at Gold Coast and Paris [Indoors], 4r finish at Wimbledon (l. to Kuznetsova) and 3r at Australian Open (l. to Petrova) and Miami (l. to Dementieva); reached 2r eight times, incl. Roland Garros, US Open and Zurich (d. Chakvetadze for last match win of career; l. to Schnyder 63 62, afterwards announcing retirement from professional tennis); earlier in season, captured fifth career Tour doubles title at Gold Coast (w/Likhovtseva), also SF at Tier I Miami (w/L.Huber); withdrew from Tokyo [Pan Pacific] w/right shoulder strain, from Birmingham w/back injury, from Los Angeles and Toronto [Canadian Open] w/left elbow injury and from Tokyo [Japan Open] w/right elbow injury.

Singles Career High Ranking
Highest Singles
Jan 29, 1996
Doubles Career High Ranking
Highest Doubles
Feb 02, 2004