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Anastasia Myskina

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Languages: Russian
Geography: Russia & CIS countries
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Anastasiya Myskina is a Russian former professional tennis player. She won the 2004 French Open singles title, becoming the first Russian female tennis player to win a Grand Slam singles title. Subsequent to this victory, she rose to no. 3 in the WTA rankings, becoming the first Russian female tennis player to reach the top 3 in the history of the rankings. In September 2004, she reached a career-high ranking of world No. 2. Although she has not officially retired, Myskina has been inactive on the WTA Tour since May 2007.

Myskina was born in Moscow and turned professional in 2000, the year in which she broke into the WTA top 500. She won her first WTA title in Palermo in only her second appearance in the main draw of a WTA tournament. She made her debut in a Grand Slam tournament at the US Open and the Fed Cup (playing doubles). In 2000, Myskina scored first career top-20 victory over no. 17 Barbara Schett en route to the Sopot semifinal. She debuted at Roland Garros (which she would later win) and Wimbledon. She played in the Sydney Olympics and reached her first Tier I quarterfinal in Zürich, where she lost to world no. 1 Martina Hingis. Myskina was plagued by injury that forced her to miss the Australian Open. As a result, she fell out of the top 100. She then had a solid indoor performance, reaching the quarterfinals in Leipzig and the semifinals in Moscow, her first career Tier I SF.

2004 was Myskina's best season to date. Myskina successfully defended her Doha title, afterwards becoming the second Russian woman to break into the Top 5, the first was Natasha Zvereva, who rose to number 5 in the World in May 1989. The highlight of Myskina's 2004 season was a victory at the French Open, where she saved match points in the fourth round against Svetlana Kuznetsova, then defeated former world number 1 players Venus Williams and Jennifer Capriati, en route to a 6–1, 6–2 victory over compatriot Elena Dementieva in the first all-Russian Grand Slam final, thus making her the first female Russian to win a Grand Slam singles title. Prior to her French Open victory, she had never made it past the 2nd round at Roland Garros. Following her win in Paris, she rose to No.3 in the rankings. She reached the final in San Diego, breaking Maria Sharapova's 14-match winning streak that included Wimbledon and beat Vera Zvonareva 17–15 in a third set tie-break, saving 9 match points, winning the longest final set tie-break in WTA Tour history. She lost in the 2004 Athens Olympics semifinal to Justine Henin, having led 5–1 in the final set. She rose to a career-high number 2 in the rankings. Myskina recovered from the tough loss to win the Kremlin Cup for the second straight year, and beat number 2 Lindsay Davenport for the first time in 5 meetings en route to doing so. She finished on the top of her group at the WTA Tour Championships, and scored her second win over a world number 1 by again beating Davenport, but lost in the semifinals to the eventual champion Sharapova.

Myskina led Russia to its first Fed Cup title, winning 8 out of 9 matches played, including winning all of her 3 matches in the final. Finished the season as world number 3, a career-best year-end rank for a female Russian, and won over $2 millions in prize money, having scored ten Top 10 wins during the 2004 season. Myskina only played two singles matches, having been injured. She lost both of those matches; including to Meghann Shaughnessy at the French Open, only winning a game. As of 25 July 2007, Myskina fell to the same ranking as the wildcard she lost to, Agnieszka Radwańska, of Number 309. She also is unranked for doubles. Myskina is taking time off due to a career-threatening injury.