A new star emerged on the WTA tour in 2019. In a span of one year, Elena went from World No. 169 in February 2019 to 17 in 2020. She won her first WTA title at the 2019 Bucharest Open at the age of 20. At the 2020 Dubai Tennis Championships, she upset two Top-5 players to take home her second title.
Elena was one of the hottest players on tour when play was paused due to the global pandemic. Unfortunately, she was unable to continue her winning ways and failed to reach the finals of any tournament in 2021. The next year would be different. Elena reached the finals of her first tournament to begin the year - a WTA 250 event. Her Grand Slam breakthrough would come later that year at Wimbledon, where she was making just her second career appearance in SW19.
Despite having one of the toughest roads to the final - defeating two former Wimbledon Champions - Elena was unfazed. Her powerful game helped her dictate points and she stayed calm in the biggest moments. In the finals, Elena defeated then World No. 2 Ons Jabeur to win her first Grand Slam trophy.
Elena started playing tennis at the age of 6 after encouragement from her father. As a junior, she had a successful career reaching No. 3 in 2017. Elena turned pro in 2016 and decided to represent Kazakhstan in 2018 - instead of Russia - due to support from the federation.
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