August 16, 2019,

Making comparisons to others from the past who traversed before you raises a philosophical question.

Is that desirable?

Maybe. Maybe not. At times it does seem unavoidable.

Too, it usually depends upon how successfully the previous star traversed.

Sofia Kenin is a beautiful, blonde young American professional tennis player.

She is her own unique individual with a distinct personality but we must admit that after studying her videos she reminded us a lot of Anna Kournikova.

In all fairness there are similarities.

Anna Sergeyevna Kournikova is a Russian former professional tennis player.

Her appearance and celebrity status made her one of the best known tennis stars worldwide. At the peak of her fame, fans looking for images of Ms. Kournikova made her name one of the most common search strings on Google Search.

Despite never winning a singles title, she reached No. 8 in the world in 2000.

Yes Sofia is American but she was born in Russia and given her recent ascension the future appears to be very bright.

Like Anna, she was born in Moscow.

Though Anna never won a Grand Slam title, still at one point, being ranked as high as number eight in the world is a feat that few have accomplished.

We hope that Sofia will one day surpass that. She certainly wants to and makes that clear rover and over.

Trust us, being compared to Anna is a huge compliment and deservedly so.

Sofia AnnaSonyaKenin made her debut in the Top 100 of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) rankings in 2018 as a teenager. As a junior, she won the USTA Girls’ 18s national championship at the age of 16.

fciwomenswrestling.com femcompetitor.com, WTA photo credit

Sofia moved to the United States shortly after she was born. She started playing tennis at 5 years old. Her father Alex acts as her long-time coach. Sofia’s parents recognized her potential and arranged for her to begin training with Rick Macci in Broward County, Florida. She has also worked with Nick Bollettieri.

Her tennis idol is Maria Sharapova. We love the Russian connection.

Our rising American star reached a career high No. 2 in the ITF junior rankings in 2015. Representing the United States, she partnered with CiCi Bellis and Tornado Alicia Black to win the 2014 Junior Fed Cup.

She was undefeated in her five matches. Her next breakthrough came towards the end of the year when she won the Orange Bowl in Florida, one of the highest level junior tournaments along with the junior grand slams.

Sofia built on that success in 2015 by winning the USTA International Spring Championships, a Grade 1 tournament.

In the summer, she won the USTA Girls 18s National Championship by defeating Tornado Alicia Black in the final. With the title, she earned a wild card into the main draw of the 2015 US Open.

Now that is making it to the big leagues.

If only she could duplicate the next achievement at the highest level.

She also participated in the junior event at the US Open and reached the final, her best performance at a junior grand slam.

Sofia started 2017 ranked outside of the Top 200, but would see her ranking steadily rise throughout the year as she played exclusively on the pro circuit.

She broke into the Top 150 in August after a string of successful results during the summer, including winning the ITF $60,000 tournament at Stockton and reaching the final at another event at that level in Lexington.

Good things happen to those who rise up.

These ITF performances helped her clinch the US Open Wild Card Challenge for the second straight year. She would have a dream come true

At the 2017 US Open, Sofia advanced beyond the first round of a grand slam for the first time, defeating her fellow Americans Lauren Davis and Sachia Vickery. We featured Lauren who is making her move as well.

Lauren Davis, American Star, The Results Speak For Themselves

The New York Post was watching and wrote, “American wild card Sofia Kenin got a special present from her father after she notched her first Grand Slam win Monday, upsetting fellow American No. 32 Lauren Davis, 7-5, 7-5, in a hard fought first-round match at the US Open.”

Wow. We sense Anna Kournikova would be proud.

Sofia would have a dream come true by meeting her idol Maria Sharapova in the third round but did eventually succumb to this 2006 US Open champion.

Still, that was quite a showing.

These were also her first two match wins on the WTA tour. Her success at the US Open helped convince her to turn pro in September of 2017, forgoing a scholarship to attend the University of Miami.

She finished the year ranked 108, knocking on the door of the Top 100.

2018 would see her star continue to ascend.

Sofia repeated her steady climb up the WTA rankings in the first half of 2018. She reached her first WTA quarterfinal at the ASB Classic in Auckland.

She first broke into the Top 100 by reaching the second round of the Indian Wells Masters as a qualifier. Sofia followed this up with an even better performance at the next Premier Mandatory event the following week. At the Miami Open, she defeated No. 11 Daria Kasatkina to make it to the third round, again as a qualifier.

In Mallorca, Sofia qualified to the main draw and then reached her first semifinals at WTA level, defeating the top seed Caroline Garcia in quarterfinals. That was an incredible accomplishment defeating a star that we previously wrote about as well.

Caroline Garcia, French Tennis Star, Beautiful, Brilliant, Resilient

Part of being a tennis star is being able to promote yourself and develop a strong fan base. Having a dynamic website helps.

Let’s visit Sofia at hers.

She welcomes us and shares some personal information at sonyakenin.us. “Sofia Anna Kenin is 19 years old. Sofia or “Sonya”, what people who are close to her call her, is your typical teenager who loves movies, friends, music, i-Phone, playing with her sister and friends. Sonya, unlike most people, found her passion early in life, at age 5, when she first picked up her father’s tennis racket and started hitting tennis balls.

Sonya started playing United States Tennis Association (USTA) tournaments, Girls’ 10 Singles, when she was seven, and in less than a year and a half she achieved a number one ranking in the State of Florida in the G10 Division. During that time she was able to focus on both her tennis and her school work while maintaining an ‘A’ average.”

Very impressive. Most of us who are parents know how difficult it can be for a teenager to maintain a full schedule and get straight A’s as well. Bravo Sofia.

Great results helps you to meet great people. Her group continues, “Her outstanding talent and hard work at an early age gave her the opportunity to hit and interact with great champions such as Kim Clijsters, Anna Kournikova, John McEnroe, Venus Williams and Jim Courier.”

It appears her dreams continue to come true.

So much of that for Sofia is due to her hard work ethic. She is someone that her fellow tennis stars have described as a grinder. She also has incredible family support as her father travels with her as a coach.

Sofia is not all work and no play. She loves to relax at the beach and socialize with family and friends watching movies and shopping.

One of her best friends is a fellow tennis player in Sasha Morozova who has a great Instagram https://www.instagram.com/sashhmorozova/  You should check it out.

If Sofia continues to win, she certainly will be able to add more special pieces to her Tiffany collection.

2019 has been a very special year for her.

Sofia began the 2019 season by winning her first WTA doubles title at the Auckland Open alongside Eugenie Bouchard.

The following week, she won her maiden WTA singles title at the Hobart International without dropping a set during the event. She upset the top seed and No. 19 Caroline Garcia in the first round before defeating Anna Karolína Schmiedlová in the final.

This propelled our rising luminary to a career-best ranking of No. 37.

At the Australian Open, she pushed world No. 1 Simona Halep to three sets in the second round, ultimately losing in a long two-hour-and-thirty minute marathon.

Then there was this headline at ftw.usatoday.com, “Serena Williams quest for a record-tying 24th Grand Slam win will have to wait until Wimbledon later this summer after she lost in the Round of 32 at the French Open on Saturday to fellow American Sofia Kenin, 6-2, 7-5.”

That was incredible.

Ms. Kenin opened her summer hard court season on a continued rise.

At the Roger’s Cup, Kenin came back from a set down to upset World No. 1 Ashleigh Barty in the second round, avenging her loss to the Aussie at the French Open.

We watched her play match by match at the Toronto Roger’s Cup and her play was incredible as she finally succumbed in the semifinals to the eventual tournament winner Bianca Andreescu of Canada.

2019 US Open? Look out. Sofia Kenin is blazing hot.

As of this August 15, 2019 writing, she is tearing it up in Cincinnati at the Masters tournament.

She is not shy about it. She wants to reach the world’s number one ranking.

That was something that Anna was never able to do but Sofia seems to have a different focus.

A special focus.

Here is her profile story: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7C_BsL05cpw

Anna Kournikova achieved greater success playing doubles, where she was at times the world No. 1 player. With Martina Hingis as her partner, she won Grand Slam titles in Australia in 1999 and 2002, and the WTA Championships in 1999 and 2000. They referred to themselves as the “Spice Girls of Tennis”.

You see, if you hang in there long enough, it opens the door to some wonderful possibilities, even if like Anna, you have to travel another pathway to get there.

We loved watching Sofia Kenin play including her grueling match with another top star in Naomi Osaka who we also wrote about.

Naomi Osaka, WTA Rising Star From The Land Of The Rising Sun

Good for Sofia.

When your name and game keeps getting mentioned with the brightest luminaries of the tennis world, we sense that like another gorgeous blonde Russian girl from the past……

Sofia is ready to spice things up.

The tennis world is watching.

~ ~ ~

Opening photo  via beIN-Sports 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sofia_Kenin

http://www.wtatennis.com/players/player/320942/title/sofia-kenin

http://sonyakenin.us/

http://www.tennis.com/pro-game/2017/08/sofia-kenin-lauren-davis-2017-us-open-tennis/68847/

http://www.usopen.org/en_US/news/articles/2017-08-28/2017-08-28_a_new_american_upstart_at_the_us_open.html

https://www.famousbirthdays.com/people/sofia-kenin.html

https://nypost.com/2017/08/29/how-dad-rewarded-american-teen-after-us-open-shocker/

https://ftw.usatoday.com/2019/06/serena-williams-sofia-kenin-upset-french-open-tennis