It was a monumental moment in Elena Vesnina’s career when she captured her first WTA Premier Mandatory title. The 6-7(6), 7-5, 6-4 victory came against countrywoman Svetlana Kuznetsova in Indian Wells.
— WTA (@WTA) March 19, 2017
At the start of 2016 Vesnina was ranked outside of the World’s Top 100 and had to play in the qualifying draws to get into most tournaments. Momentum shifted her way in Doha that year when she defeated Caroline Garcia, Simona Halep and Caroline Wozniacki to make the quarterfinals out of qualifying.
After Doha, Vesnina lost in the first round of qualifying in Indian Wells (how appropriate). After leaving California, Vesnina qualified for the Miami Open and defeated Venus Williams in the second round 6-0, 6-7(5), 6-2.
Shortly after, she battled through qualifying at the Volvo Car Open in Charleston, South Carolina, to reach the finals. She lost to Sloane Stephens but Vesnina was on an upwards-tear through the WTA rankings. A few months later she made the Wimbledon semifinals as an unseeded player and she’s been seeded ever since.
— Elena Vesnina (@EVesnina001) March 20, 2017
The final between Vesnina and Kuznetsova lasted a gruelling 3 hours in the desert heat – more than double the time of the men’s final. Vesnina was a set and 4-1 down before she stormed back for a thrilling 6-7(6), 7-5, 6-4 win. Once again, we see that “it’s not over until it’s over”.
Vesnina and Kuznetsova were also teammates on the Russian Fed Cup team that won the title in 2008 against Spain. Ekaterina Makarova and Vera Zvonareva were also on the team that year.
The Indian Wells title is only Vesnina’s third WTA singles title in her 15-year career. The 28-year-old Russian does hold 15 doubles titles with good friend Makarova which includes 2 Grand Slam titles (Roland Garros and US Open).
— BNP Paribas Open (@BNPPARIBASOPEN) March 19, 2017
Vesnina will be among world-class WTA players in Toronto for Rogers Cup this year. Come ‘Get Closer’ to all the action as we begin our countdown to August.
Click here to get your 2017 Rogers Cup tickets.