Sports

Alison Riske – Professional Tennis Player

Alison Riske also known as Alison Riske-Amritraj, which is her married name, was born on July 3rd,1990 in Pennsylvania. Alison Riske is an American professional tennis player. On November 4, she reached the highest point in her career in the world singles ranking at #18. Alison Riske won her first WTA tour title in October 2014.

Early Life

Alison Riske is the daughter of Al Riske and Carol Riske. Her father worked at the secret service and later as an FBI investigator and her mother was a school teacher. Alison Riske started playing tennis at the age of three. She has 2 siblings, a brother and a sister. Her sister, Sarah also played tennis, had a professional career and played for Vanderbilt University. Her brother, Dan also played tennis and now works as an accountant.

Alison Riske studied at Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School and during fall 2006, she played tennis for peters township high school, where she led the girl’s tennis team to the Pennsylvania state championship and won in singles. In the same year, she won the USTA National Collegiate Clay Court Championship and earned a spot in the US Open qualifying draw, and there she won her first match over Sorana Cîrstea after that she lost to Julie Ditty. She won the ITA Summer Claycourt Championship and also finished second at the USTA National Hardcourts that year. In early 2008, she earned the No. 1 ranking in her country in the Girls’ 18s competition She got into the professional circuit in 2008 when she served as a hitting partner for the United States Fed Cup team in their semifinal against Russia.

Alison Riske was coached by Janice Irwin at the start of her career. She later began working with Yves Boulais, the husband of former professional Patricia Hy-Boulais, alongside her sister Sarah. She briefly trained at the USTA training centre in Boca Raton, Florida, as well as Van der Meer Tennis Academy in Hilton Head, South Carolina. She trained with Yves Boulais at the end of 2012.

In late July 2019, just a few weeks after reaching her first Grand Slam quarterfinal at Wimbledon, Riske married her long-term partner Stephen Amritraj (nephew of Vijay Amritraj and son of Anand Amritraj) in her hometown, Pittsburgh.

Professional Career

2009-11

Riske came into 2009 ranked 895 in the world. In May, Riske began a run on the ITF Circuit. As a qualifier, she reached the semifinals of a pro tournament in Indian Harbor Beach. In June, she reached the finals of a tournament in Hilton Head, and again as a qualifier, reached the semifinals of a tournament in Boston. Her form continued as she reached another semifinal, this time in Atlanta.

By the time of the US Open, her ranking had improved to 344, over 500 places from when she started the year. Alison Riske continued her form to the end of the year where she broke through at an ITF tournament in Troy, Alabama. Again as a qualifier, she defeated compatriot Christina McHale to take the title there. She finished the year ranked at No. 232. Alison Riske began 2010, her first full season as a professional, by reaching the semifinals of an ITF event in Rancho Mirage, California. In October, Riske completed an impressive run of winning a 75K, a 50K and a 50K in three straight weeks. In 2011, Riske reached the finals of 50K in Indian Harbour Beach. Alison Riske completed 2011 with a successful run in Europe winning in Joué-lès-Tours and Limoges and finishing the year ranked 136. 

2013

At the US Open, Riske caused a big upset when she defeated former Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitová in the third round. She lost in the following round to former world No. 5, Daniela Hantuchová.

2014

Riske reached the quarterfinals at the Hobart International, beating Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Casey Dellacqua. In the Australian Open, Riske upset No. 23 seed Elena Vesnina and made it to the third round before losing to No. 9 seed, Angelique Kerber. At the WTA Premier Birmingham, she reached the third round after beating Lyudmyla Kichenok in the first round and her twin sister Nadiia Kichenok in the second round.

At the inaugural Tianjin Open in October, Riske was seeded sixth and defeated Çağla Büyükakçay, Olga Govortsova, Varvara Lepchenko and Zheng Saisai en route to the final, without dropping a set. She proceeded to win her maiden WTA title, defeating 17-year-old Belinda Bencic. 

2016

Riske reached the final of the Shenzhen Open in January losing there to Agnieszka Radwańska in straight sets. She also reached her first career final on grass at the Nottingham Open where she lost to Karolína Plíšková. She then reached her third final of the year at the Tianjin Open, where she won her first title back in 2014. Along the way, she earned one of the biggest wins of her career by defeating two-time Grand Slam champion, former world No. 2, and then-world No. 8, Svetlana Kuznetsova, in the semifinals. However, she lost in straight sets to Chinese home favourite, former top 15 singles player, and former doubles world No. 1, Peng Shuai, in straight sets.

Read more about Alison Riske Carrer Below:

Reference: Alison Riske – Wikipedia

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