Helena Suková (Czech pronunciation: [ˈɦɛlɛna ˈsukovaː]) (born 23 February 1965) is a Czech former professional tennis player. During her career, she won 14 major doubles titles, nine in women's doubles and five in mixed doubles. She is also a two-time Olympic silver medalist in doubles, a four-time major singles runner-up, and won a total of 10 singles titles and 69 doubles titles.

Helena Suková
Country (sports) Czechoslovakia (1983–1992)
 Czech Republic (1993–1998)
ResidencePrague, Czech Republic
Born (1965-02-23) 23 February 1965 (age 59)
Prague, Czechoslovakia
(now Czech Republic)
Height1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)
Turned pro1983
PlaysRight-handed (one-handed backhand)
Prize moneyUS$ 6,391,245
Int. Tennis HoF2018 (member page)
Career record614–307 (66.7%)
Career titles10
Highest rankingNo. 4 (18 March 1985)
Grand Slam singles results
Australian OpenF (1984, 1989)
French OpenSF (1986)
WimbledonQF (1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1993)
US OpenF (1986, 1993)
Career record752–220
Career titles69
Highest rankingNo. 1 (5 February 1990)
Grand Slam doubles results
Australian OpenW (1990, 1992)
French OpenW (1990)
WimbledonW (1987, 1989, 1990, 1996)
US OpenW (1985, 1993)
Other doubles tournaments
Tour FinalsW (1992)
Mixed doubles
Career titles5
Grand Slam mixed doubles results
Australian OpenF (1994, 1998)
French OpenW (1991)
WimbledonW (1994, 1996, 1997)
US OpenW (1993)
Team competitions
Fed CupW (1983, 1984, 1985, 1988)
Hopman CupW (1989)
Medal record
Olympic Games – Tennis
Silver medal – second place 1988 Seoul Doubles
Silver medal – second place 1996 Atlanta Doubles

Personal life edit

Suková comes from a prominent Czech tennis family. Her mother, Věra Pužejová Suková, was a women's singles finalist at Wimbledon in 1962. Her father, Cyril Suk II, was president of the Czechoslovak Tennis Federation.[1]

Her brother, Cyril Suk III, is a former professional player on the men's tour who teamed with Suková to win three Grand Slam mixed doubles titles, at the French Open in 1991 and at Wimbledon in 1996 and 1997.

Career edit

Suková turned professional in 1981. Her career-high world rankings were fourth in singles and first in women's doubles.

Suková was a singles runner-up at the Australian Open twice (in 1984 and 1989) and at the US Open twice (in 1986 and 1993). Her most memorable Grand Slam singles win was against fellow Czech Martina Navratilova in a semifinal of the 1984 Australian Open, where she ended Navratilova's 74-match winning streak and her chance at winning a calendar year Grand Slam. Chris Evert defeated her in the final.

In 1987, she became the fourth player to defeat Navratilova and Evert in the same tournament at Eastbourne and she also stopped Navratilova's 69 grass-win streak. Suková had a career Grand Slam in women's doubles, winning four titles at Wimbledon, two at the US Open, one at the Australian Open, and one at the French Open.

She won three mixed doubles titles at Wimbledon, one at the US Open, and one at the French Open. She also was a women's doubles silver medalist at the Olympic Games in 1988 and 1996 (both times partnering Jana Novotná).[2]

Suková helped Czechoslovakia win the Fed Cup four times, in 1983, 1984, 1985, and 1988. She also teamed with Miloslav Mečíř to win the inaugural Hopman Cup for Czechoslovakia in 1989.

Over the course of her career, Suková won 10 singles titles and 69 doubles titles. Despite retiring from the professional tour in 1998, she was given a wild card into the 2006 Wimbledon mixed doubles tournament with her brother, Cyril Suk III. They lost their first round match.

Post-retirement activity edit

In 1999, Suková helped re-establish the International Lawn Tennis Club of the Czech Republic and became its president.

From January 2001 until June 2008, she was a co-opted member of the executive committee of the Council of the International Clubs. From February 2001 until November 2008, she served on the presidium of the Czech Olympians' Club. In June 2007, Suková was appointed by The Czech Olympic Committee to the presidium of the Czech Fair Play Club. She is also a co-founder of the Kids and Junior Tennis Advancement Organization in the Czech Republic.

Helena Sukova is also a member of the 'Champions for Peace' club, a group of 90 famous athletes committed to serving peace in the world through sport,[3] created by Peace and Sport, a Monaco-based international organization.[4]

Helena Sukova got her university doctorate degree in psychology, and since February 2011, has served as a vice president of the Association of Sport Psychologists in the Czech Republic, and served on the working group of the Task Force on Sport Psychology of the European Federation of Psychologists' Associations. She works as a psychologist on a regular basis with her clientele, who range from non-sporting circles to former or current professional athletes.

Hall of Fame induction edit

On 24 January 2018, Helena Sukova was elected into the Tennis Hall of Fame.[1]

Grand Slam performance timeline edit

(W) winner; (F) finalist; (SF) semifinalist; (QF) quarterfinalist; (#R) rounds 4, 3, 2, 1; (RR) round-robin stage; (Q#) qualification round; (DNQ) did not qualify; (A) absent; (NH) not held; (SR) strike rate (events won / competed); (W–L) win–loss record.

Singles edit

Tournament 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 W–L
Australian Open 3R 1R 3R F QF NH 4R QF F SF 3R 3R A 3R 2R 3R 1R 1R 38–16
French Open A 2R 4R 1R 2R SF 4R QF 2R A 2R A A 3R 1R 1R 2R A 21–13
Wimbledon A 1R 1R 4R QF QF QF QF 4R 4R 1R 3R QF 4R 2R 2R 4R 1R 39–17
US Open A 1R 3R QF QF F SF 4R QF 4R 3R 4R F A 2R 3R 1R A 45–15
Year-end ranking 74 25 17 7 9 5 7 8 8 14 17 12 17 22 29 27 80 NR

Doubles edit

Tournament 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 SR W–L
Australian Open 2R A F F NH SF A SF W 3R W A 3R QF 1R SF 1R 2 / 13 39–11
French Open 3R 1R 3R F SF SF F SF W SF A A 1R 1R QF QF SF 1 / 15 46–14
Wimbledon 2R 3R 1R SF 2R W A W W QF SF QF 2R QF W SF QF 4 / 16 53–12
US Open 3R A 1R W QF QF 3R 3R F 3R SF W A SF SF 3R A 2 / 14 45–12
Win–loss 6–4 2–2 6–4 19–3 8–3 16–3 7–2 16–3 23–1 11–4 14–2 9–1 3–3 10–4 13–3 13–4 7–3 9 / 58 183–49
Year-end championships
Tour Championships A A A F F F SF SF QF SF W SF A QF QF SF A 1 / 12 14–1
Career statistics
Year-end ranking 8 3 3 6 4 2 1 8 1 2 23 9 6 10 42

Mixed doubles edit

Tournament 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999–
2006 W–L
Australian Open NH NH NH NH NH A A A A 1R A A F SF QF 2R F A A 14–6
French Open A A A QF A 1R A 3R A W A A SF 2R 2R SF 3R A A 16–8
Wimbledon 1R A A QF A A A A 1R 3R 3R 1R W 2R W W 1R A 1R 25–9
US Open 2R A A A A A A A A 2R F W A A QF 2R A A A 14–5

References edit

  1. ^ a b "Michael Stich and Helena Sukova elected into Tennis Hall of Fame". Tennis.com. Retrieved 22 February 2018.
  2. ^ Dunn, Carrie (6 September 2017). "Sukova nominated for Hall of Fame induction". WTA Tennis. Retrieved 23 February 2018.
  3. ^ "Peace and Sport | Our champions for peace". peace-sport.org. Retrieved 23 February 2018.

External links edit