Known as one of the great thinkers of the game, and for having a tremendous tactical mind, Poland’s Agnieszka Radwanska has established herself as one of the great finesse players in the women’s game. She has pushed the levels of Polish tennis forward, becoming the first ever Pole to reach the final of a Grand Slam, as well as becoming the first Polish player to win a WTA singles title. After gaining recognition as the Most Impressive Newcomer in 2006, Radwanska’s popular smiling face has made her an instantly recognisable star.
Agnieszka, the older sister of up and coming WTA tennis star Urzula, was born in Krakow, Poland in 1989. As so many of the top stars in the world did, she picked up a tennis racquet at a very early age, just four years old. It was her father who inspired and encouraged her into the game. She grew up practicing at a club in Germany, where her father was a professional. As well as playing tennis, she studies tourism at the Polish Sport University in Krakow. Radwanska speaks both fluent Polish and English.
WTA and Grand Slam History
Grand Slam success found its way to Radwanska early in her career as she claimed the junior Wimbledon title in 2005, the year in which she turned professional. She collected another junior Grand Slam title twelve months later in winning the junior French Open at Roland Garros. Her first ever WTA Tour event came in 2006, making it the quarter finals of the Warsaw Open. In was also in 2006 that she produced a stellar run to make it the semi finals of the main draw at Wimbledon, beating big names Venus Williams, Francesca Schiavone and Elena Dementieva along the way.
In 2007,with a win at the Nordea Nordic Light Open, Radwanska became the first Polish player ever to win a WTA tour singles title, beating Vera Dushevina in the final. By the end of 2008, she had earned another first, becoming the first Polish woman to make over $1 million in career prize money. Just to put the icing on the cake, she also became the first Polish women to ever be ranked inside the top ten in the world. She continued to push hard at Grand Slams but couldn’t better her quarter finals appearances at the 2008 Australian Open and Wimbledon, matching her last eight run in England in 2009 as well.
By 2011 Azarenka was consistently trading blows with the best in the world and claiming titles along the way. Just a year later in 2012, she finally reached her first ever Grand Slam final. It ended in defeat against favourite Serena Williams, but Radwanska had put up a big show of resistance after looking down and out, earning herself tremendous plaudits. It may have been a big step forward to claiming her maiden Grand Slam title in the future.