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Deceased on May 4, 2014 (liver cancer) ... Husband and longtime coach was Nino Severino ... Mother, Olga, is a former Russian pentathlete; father, Sergei, is a former Dynamo Kiev and Ipswich Town soccer player; brother, Sergei, was also a pro soccer player ... Began playing at age 10 ... Suffered from a chronic liver condition; was patron of the Children's Liver Disease Foundation (CLDF) ... Also coached at the Elena Baltacha Academy of Tennis in Ipswich, for local girls from disadvantaged backgrounds aged 6 to 10 ... Interests included watching ballroom dancing and loved to keep up with friends and fans via Twitter in her spare time.
British Fed Cup Team, 2002-10, 2012; British Olympic Team, 2012.
Career in Review
- Played first event of career at ITF/Edinburgh-GBR in 1997; played first WTA qualifying at Wimbledon in 2000; played first WTA main draw at Eastbourne in 2001 (was WC into qualifying).
- Singles highlights were four WTA QFs - three in 2010 (Memphis, Eastbourne and Istanbul) and one in 2011 (Dallas).
- Best Grand Slam results were three 3r finishes at 2002 Wimbledon (l. to Likhovtseva), 2005 Australian Open (l. to Farina Elia) and 2010 Australian Open (l. to Safina).
- Had three Top 10 wins in career, all within span of a few months during 2010 season - at Indian Wells (d. No.10 Li), Eastbourne (d. No.10 Li) and Istanbul (d. No.8 Schiavone).
- Made Top 100 debut on September 28, 2009 (rose from No.101 to No.93) and Top 50 debut on September 13, 2010 (after US Open; rose from No.57 to No.49 - would be career-high).
- Represented Great Britain at London Olympics in 2012 (in singles and in doubles w/Keothavong).
- Also won 11 singles titles and 4 doubles titles on ITF Circuit.
- Last WTA main draw was Wimbledon in 2013 (fell 1r - l. to Pennetta); final match of professional career was last round of US Open qualifying in 2013 (l. to Larcher de Brito).
- Announced retirement on Monday, November 18, 2013.