SESIL RADOSLAVOVA KARATANTCHEVA (Bulgarian : Сесил Радославова Каратанчева; born 8 August 1989) is a Bulgarian tennis player.
Karatantcheva has won seven singles titles on the ITF tour in her career. On 7 November 2005, she reached her best singles ranking of world no. 35. On 19 April 2010, she peaked at world no. 154 on the doubles rankings.
Karatantcheva is perhaps best known for reaching the quarterfinals of the 2005 French Open , upsetting seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams en route. The same year, she twice tested positive for nandrolone and was therefore issued a two-year suspension. She returned to professional competition in January 2008.
* 1.1 2003-2004: Early career
* 1.2 2005: Breakthrough and first
French Open quarterfinal
* 1.3 2006-2007: Doping scandal and 2 year suspension
* 1.4 2008
* 1.5 2009: Representing
* 2 Personal life
* 3 WTA Tour finals
* 3.1 Doubles: 1 (0–1)
* 4 ITF Circuit finals: 13 (7–6)
* 4.1 Singles: 14 (7–7)
* 5 Fed Cup participation
* 5.1 Singles (12–5) * 5.2 Doubles (7–8)
* 6 Grand Slam performance timeline * 7 See also * 8 References * 9 External links
She first began playing tennis at the age of 5. In 2001, 12-year-old Karatantcheva won the Orange Bowl tournament for her age group, defeating Alisa Kleybanova in the final. Early in her playing days, she trained for approximately six months at the famous Nick Bollettieri tennis academy .
2003-2004: EARLY CAREER
Karatantcheva played her first professional tournament in September
2003 in Sofia,
2005: BREAKTHROUGH AND FIRST FRENCH OPEN QUARTERFINAL
2005 was Karatantcheva's breakthrough year. She started off the year at a tournament in Gold Coast, Australia by qualifying, and then defeating the tournament's #7 seed Elena Likhovtseva before falling in the quarterfinals. She then qualified for the Australian Open , before losing to the #4 seed Sharapova in the first round. Her most successful tournament to date was at Roland Garros . Karatantcheva defeated the #19 seed Shinobu Asagoe in the second round, and then stunned the world with her victory over the #11 seed and former world number one Venus Williams in the third round. After defeating Emmanuelle Gagliardi in the fourth round, she fell to Likhovtseva in the quarterfinals. Karatantcheva became the youngest female to reach the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam tournament since Martina Hingis in 1996. At Wimbledon , she lost to Sharapova once again, being able to win just one game.
In 2005, Karatantcheva also won a European club championship in
At the end of the year, Karatantcheva came up 8th in the Bulgarian
Sportsperson of the Year rankings, earning 676 points. She was also
honoured by the Bulgarian
On December 20, 2005, the French sports newspaper L\'Equipe reported that Karatantcheva had failed a drug test earlier in the year at Roland Garros, and that she had appeared in front of a three-person panel of judges to explain the results. The newspaper claims that Karatantcheva said she was pregnant at the time of the test, which would explain the high levels of nandrolone in her system. Karatantcheva has denied all allegations, saying "I am shocked. I have not appeared before judges of the international federation."
2006-2007: DOPING SCANDAL AND 2 YEAR SUSPENSION
On January 11, 2006, the ITF issued a two-year ban after two positive drug tests for nandrolone . While Karatantcheva has claimed she was pregnant at the time of one of the tests, another laboratory carried out a pregnancy test on her urine sample, and it tested negative. On July 3, 2006 the Court of Arbitration for Sport denied her appeal to overturn the ban with the argument that said nandrolone was found in concentrations which were inconsistent with the normal levels for that stage of pregnancy.
Karatantcheva did not play any matches in 2006 or 2007 following her drug ban. She mainly trained in Pravets .
Sesil at the 2008 US Open
Karatantcheva's first match after the ban was in a pre-qualification tournament for a wild card into the 25,000 USD ITF tournament in Surprise, Arizona, USA. She won three matches in one day to win the event and thus won a wild card for the qualifying draw in Surprise, Arizona. In the qualifying draw, Sesil beat Susanna Lingman, Maria Kondratieva, and Kristína Kučová , to enter the main draw. In the main draw, Karatantcheva beat the 5th seed Sunitha Rao in three sets in the first round and Robin Stephenson in the second round. In the quarterfinals, Karatantcheva beat Magdaléna Rybáriková in two sets, and in the semifinals she defeated the 2nd seed Viktoriya Kutuzova . In the finals, Sesil played a tough three set match and overcame the 8th seed, American Angela Haynes .
In late January, still unranked, she entered another $25,000 tournament at La Quinta, and again battled through three rounds of qualifying into the main draw, despite a scare in her qualifying match against American player Stacia Fonseca , who took the first set from the Bulgarian before the match swung decisively the other way. Having fended off a spirited challenge from second-seeded Angelika Bachmann in the first round of the main draw, she made light work of subsequent opponents en route to the semifinals, where for the second tournament in succession she was scheduled to play Viktoriya Kutuzova . This time, the match ran to three sets, but Karatantcheva ultimately prevailed in three sets. In the final, Karatantcheva defeated the 3rd seed, Sandra Klösel .
Karatantcheva attracted criticism from the Bulgarian tennis federation for competing at La Quinta in preference to participating in Bulgaria's Federation Cup tie scheduled the same week. She was accused of breach of contract and threatened with a fine, but the Bulgarian teenager stood by her decision, which she had taken on the grounds that it was proving extremely difficult for her to gain entry even to low-level tournaments following the loss of all her ranking points and any right to protected ranking status after her ban, so she needed to work at re-establishing herself at least in the mid-hundreds of the WTA rankings as a matter of priority before tending to national team commitments.
In February, the Bulgarian was awarded a wildcard into the $75,000 Midland event, but her winning streak came to an abrupt end as she was defeated in the first round by qualifier Valérie Tétreault of Canada, who had raced through the three qualifying rounds for the loss of just nine games, five of them against former Top 50 star Mirjana Lučić . Karatantcheva then attempted to qualify for a WTA Tier III event in Memphis but lost in the first round of qualifying to Hana Šromová of the Czech Republic.
In early March, she qualified for the $50,000 Las Vegas event including victories over Amber Liu and Elena Bovina . However, she lost in the first round of the main draw to wildcarded American Madison Brengle . She also received a wildcard into the qualifying event for the WTA Tier I event at Indian Wells but lost in the first round of qualifying to Evgeniya Rodina . Her luck changed however, when, at the end of March, she managed to qualify and reach the final of the $50,000 event in Latina, losing to Iveta Benešová in straight sets.
In April, she reached the quarter-finals of the $25,000 event at
Civitavecchia, losing to
Betina Jozami of
In May, she played her first WTA main draw match since her suspension in Fes, Morocco against Elena Baltacha which she won in straight sets.
In June, Sesil reached a QF of the $75,000 ITF tournament in Marseille. She was in the qualies of Wimbledon but managed to reach only the second match which she lost to Magdaléna Rybáriková from Slovakia.
2009: REPRESENTING KAZAKHSTAN
On 10 January 2009, it was announced that Karatantcheva would take
Kazakh citizenship and compete for the
In tournament play in January she reached the second round (as a qualifier) at the Brisbane International defeating top 50 player Iveta Benešová along the way and then backed it up by playing (and winning) her first main draw grand slam match (again as a qualifier) at the Australian Open. She then lost in the 2nd Round to China's Peng Shuai . This was to be her last main tournament playing for Bulgaria until 2015.
2010: FIRST WTA SEMIFINAL
At the PTT Pattaya Open Karatantcheva reached her first WTA semifinal, before losing to Tamarine Tanasugarn . Karatantcheva qualified for the Aegon Classic tournament in Birmingham where she reached the quarterfinals winning five matches in a row, upsetting Yaroslava Shvedova in straight sets in the second round, before losing to second seed Maria Sharapova .
Karatantcheva failed to qualify in Brisbane , Melbourne , Pattaya , and Monterrey . She reached the final of a $25K ITF event in Clearwater , losing to Ajla Tomljanović . At the French Open , she lost to Olga Govortsova in the final round of qualifying. After barely missing out on qualifying for the Aegon Classic , Karatantcheva fell to Arina Rodionova in the first round of qualifying of Wimbledon . She took a two-week break following Wimbledon.
She returned at the 2011 Internazionali Femminili di Palermo , where she qualified for the main draw. She drew 2nd seed Roberta Vinci in the first round. Although Karatantcheva played well she was beaten in straight sets. She then competed in two ITF $100,000 events – in Bucharest and Astana , losing in the early round of both tournaments.
She then failed to qualify for the 2011 US Open , marking the first year since 2009 that she had not competed in the main draw of a Major. Her poor form continued, losing in the 1st or 2nd rounds of 4 more ITF tournaments.
She began to improve her game by advancing to the semifinals of a
$50K ITF event in
Troy, Alabama . She then competed in a $25K
tournament in Rock Hill , losing in the quarterfinals. Karatantcheva
then played at the $50K event in
Grapevine, Texas , where she advanced
to the final, losing to 8th seed
Kurumi Nara in three sets. Following
her performance in Grapevine, Sesil achieved her best result of the
year by winning a $75K ITF tournament, the 2011 Goldwater Women\'s
Karatantcheva began the year ranked World No. 139. She failed to qualify in Brisbane and at the Australian Open. She then competed in the $100,000 ITF tournament in Cali . Unseeded, she advanced to the semifinals before losing to Mandy Minella . She then played at the 2012 Copa Sony Ericsson Colsanitas and 2012 Monterrey Open . Although she qualified for both, she lost in the first round to Catalina Castaño and Yaroslava Shvedova , respectively. Sesil then qualified for the 2012 Abierto Mexicano Telcel . Although she put up a fight, Sesil was defeated by 6th seed Johanna Larsson in 3 sets, in the first round. Karatantcheva committed 18 double faults during the match – almost an all-time high in WTA history. Karatantcheva then competed at the 2012 BNP Paribas Open and the 2012 Sony Ericsson Open , losing in the first round of qualifying for both tournaments. Despite the losses, Sesil rebounded and reached the final of a $50K ITF event, losing to Arantxa Rus .
Karatantcheva headed to
She opened her grass court season at the 2012 Aegon Classic in Birmingham. She entered the qualifying draw and defeated local girl Francesca Stephenson , but fell to Thailand's Noppawan Lertcheewakarn in the final round. However, she was offered a place in the main draw as a lucky loser due to the withdrawal of another player. She faced another Thai player, Tamarine Tanasugarn , defeating her in straight sets. Her run was ended in the second round by 8th seed Ekaterina Makarova . She then lost in the final round of qualifying at the 2012 Wimbledon Championships . Despite the loss, her ranking climbed due to her improved result from 2011.
Karatantcheva then played at the 2012 Bank of the West Classic . She fell in the first round of qualifying. She then qualified for the Premier-level 2012 Mercury Insurance Open in Carlsbad. She was points away from winning, but was finally beaten by Melinda Czink in the first round. She then competed at the 2nd annual Citi Open in Washington, D.C. She lost to American Sloane Stephens in the first round. She then continued her hard-court season at the 2012 Rogers Cup in Montreal. As the 18th seed in qualifying, she won three matches for a place in the main draw. In the first round she dismantled Sorana Cîrstea , without losing a single game, in only 43 minutes. Karatantcheva lost to 16th seed Lucie Šafářová in the second round in straight sets. Her ranking climbed to No. 92, her highest ranking since 2005. Karatantcheva then played at the 2012 Western however, she was more successful with qualifying wins over World No. 95 Anabel Medina Garrigues and Alexandra Panova , the latter match lasting over 3 hours. Her run was ended in the first round by Dutchwoman Kiki Bertens .
Karatantcheva proceeded to compete in Osprey , but lost to Gioia
Barbieri in the first round. At the
Family Circle Cup , she played
qualifying and overcame
Sanaz Marand before bowing out to Alla
Kudryavtseva . She next played at the Dothan Pro
Following Wimbledon, Karatantcheva entered the inaugural Bucharest Open , winning three qualifying matches before losing to Silvia Soler Espinosa in the first round. She then played qualifying at the İstanbul Cup but was beaten in the first round by Ana Konjuh of Croatia. She returned to the ITF circuit at the 50K Powiat Poznański Open in Sobota, advancing to the final having only dropped a set, but suffered a disappointing three-set loss there after winning the first set. It was her first final since April 2012. Karatantcheva next entered US Open qualifying but was beaten in the first round by Melanie Oudin .
Karatantcheva returned to action at the Coupe Banque Nationale as a direct entrant in the main draw. She began with a win over Sanaz Marand in the first round and squared off against 3rd seeded Kristina Mladenovic in the second, edging the Frenchwoman in a match that lasted over two-and-a-half hours. Karatantcheva subsequently moved on to the quarterfinals but was defeated there by Mirjana Lučić-Baroni , whom would go on to win the tournament.
In October Karatantcheva announced, that she had decided to play for
her home country
2015: REPRESENTING BULGARIA ONCE AGAIN
Karatancheva's first tournament of the year was the 2015 ASB Classic , where she has started from qualifications, losing in the third round of the qualifying competition to Urszula Radwańska after previously defeating two opponents. Karatancheva failed to qualify to the Australian Open, after losing in the second qualifying round to Alexandra Panova . In February Karatantcheva participated at the 2015 Abierto Mexicano Telcel , where she started from qualifications. She was defeated in straight sets in the third qualifying round by Lucie Hradecká , but nonetheless reached the main tournament as a lucky loser . Karatantcheva then eliminated Marie Bouzková , Kiki Bertens and Monica Puig to secure herself a place in the semi-finals for the second time in her career. She subsequently lost to 5th seed Timea Bacsinszky in two sets. Next she played at Monterrey Open , where she lost in the first round of qualifications. Despite the setback, Karatantcheva was nonetheless able to stay on course towards improving her ranking by qualifying for the main phase of the 2015 BNP Paribas Open shortly after that. In the first round, she managed a two-set victory over compatriot and friend Tsvetana Pironkova . This was the first time since 2000 that two Bulgarian women had met in the main draw of a WTA tournament. Karatantcheva then suffered a defeat in straight sets to Coco Vandeweghe . Next, Karatantcheva qualified for the main draw of 2015 Miami Open , where she reached the second round, defeating Lauren Davis then ranked number 61, in the first round in straight sets, and losing to 21st seed Garbiñe Muguruza . Her ranking improved to 109. Next, at the Family Circle Cup in Charleston, she qualified for the main draw, beating Arantxa Rus and Louisa Chirico along the way, and lost in the first round to 9th seed Samantha Stosur . At the French Open , Karatantcheva was seeded 3rd in the qualifying draw and she qualified for the main draw. In the first round she defeated former world no. 1 Jelena Janković in straight sets, which allowed her to return to the top 100 in the WTA rankings. Then she lost in the second round to Irina Falconi in three sets. Due to her improved ranking, Karatantcheva began directly from the main draw at the Wimbledon Championships . In the first round she lost to Spaniard Silvia Soler Espinosa in a tight three-setter match. At the US Open , Karatantcheva suffered a 1-6, 2-6 loss to Belinda Bencic from Switzerland.
Karatantcheva's season began with a disappointment at the 2016 Brisbane , losing in the first round of the qualifying draw. She played at the 2016 Apia International Sydney , starting once again from the qualifications, defeating Yaroslava Shvedova (after taking a 4:1 lead in the first set and her opponent retiring) in the first round, but then succumbing in straight sets to Magdaléna Rybáriková . At the qualifying competition for the Australian Open Karatantcheva was seeded fourth. However, she was unable to pass the first hurdle, being defeated 2-6, 0-6 by Jessica Pegula . Karatantcheva did not manage to reach the main draw of the 2016 French Open, losing to Ukrainian Maryna Zanevska in three sets after taking the first one in the second round of qualifying , for which she was not among the seeds. Her downturn in fortunes continued in the qualifying competition for Wimbledon , where she suffered elimination in the first round at the hands of Frenchwoman Shérazad Reix in a hard-fought match that was decided in three sets. At the qualifying competition for the US Open Karatantcheva posted a win in three sets against Slovak Rebecca Šramková in the first round, but was then defeated by Belgian Elise Mertens in another three-setter match.
She is the daughter of former rower and member of Parliament as part of the Bulgarian Business Bloc Radoslav Karatantchev. He is currently a member of the Bulgarian Socialist Party and also acts as Karatatcheva′s coach.
She has three sisters, one of whom, Gabriel Karatantcheva, is also a tennis player. Karatantcheva is currently in a relationship with Georgi Dolmov, a former footballer .
WTA TOUR FINALS
DOUBLES: 1 (0–1)
Grand Slam tournaments (0–0)
WTA Tour Championships (0–0)
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* ^ "Women\'s WTA Rankings - WTA Tour
* v * t * e
French Open girls\' singles champions
PRE OPEN ERA
* 1953 Christine Brunon * 1954 Beatrice de Chambure * 1955 Maria-Teresa Reidl * 1956 Eliane Launay * 1957 Ilse Buding * 1958 Francesca Gordigani * 1959 Joan Cross * 1960 Françoise Dürr * 1961 Robyn Ebbern * 1962 Kaye Dening * 1963 Monique Salfati * 1964 Nicole Seghers * 1965 Esme Emanuel * 1966 Odile de Roubin * 1967 Corinne Molesworth
* 1968 Lesley Hunt * 1969 Kazuko Sawamatsu * 1970 Veronica Burton * 1971 Elena Granatourova * 1972 Renáta Tomanová * 1973 Mima Jaušovec * 1974 Mariana Simionescu * 1975 Regina Maršíková * 1976 Michelle Tyler * 1977 Anne Smith * 1978 Hana Mandlíková * 1979 Lena Sandin * 1980 Kathleen Horvath * 1981 Bonnie Gadusek * 1982 Manuela Maleeva * 1983 Pascale Paradis * 1984 Gabriela Sabatini * 1985 Laura Garrone * 1986 Patricia Tarabini * 1987 Natalia Zvereva * 1988 Julie Halard * 1989 Jennifer Capriati * 1990 Magdalena Maleeva * 1991 Anna Smashnova * 1992 Rossana de los Ríos * 1993 Martina Hingis * 1994 Martina Hingis * 1995 Amélie Cocheteux * 1996 Amélie Mauresmo * 1997 Justine Henin * 1998 Nadia Petrova *