Open main menu

Monica Niculescu (born 25 September 1987) is a Romanian professional tennis player. She reached her career-high singles ranking of world No. 28 in February 2012, and has three singles titles to her credit on the WTA Tour since she turned pro in May 2002, the last one coming at the end of 2016, at the BGL Luxembourg Open. Although she was a steady top 30 player for several years and enjoyed relative success in singles, she is also a doubles specialist, where she achieved a career-high ranking of no.11, in April 2018, after partnering with Grand Slam winner and Olympic medalist Andrea Sestini Hlaváčková at Indian Wells. Her biggest doubles result up to date is reaching her first grand slam doubles final at Wimbledon, in 2017, alongside Chan Hao-ching. She was also runner-up at three Premier Mandatory events: the 2015 Wuhan Open, with fellow Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu, the 2016 Rogers Cup, with current world no.1 Simona Halep, and the 2017 Cincinnati Open, partnering former world No. 1 in doubles, Su-wei Hsieh.

Monica Niculescu
Niculescu WM16 (39) (28135970530) (cropped).jpg
Country (sports) Romania
ResidenceBucharest, Romania
Born (1987-09-25) 25 September 1987 (age 31)
Slatina, Romania
Height1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)
Turned proMay 2002
PlaysRight-handed (two-handed backhand)
CoachCălin Stelian Ciorbagiu
Prize money$5,678,368
Singles
Career record493–340 (59.2%)
Career titles3 WTA, 1 WTA 125K, 18 ITF
Highest rankingNo. 28 (27 February 2012)
Current rankingNo. 138 (18 March 2019)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open3R (2011, 2012, 2014)
French Open2R (2014)
Wimbledon4R (2015)
US Open4R (2011)
Other tournaments
Olympic Games2R (2016)
Doubles
Career record430–249 (63.3%)
Career titles8 WTA, 1 WTA 125k, 22 ITF
Highest rankingNo. 11 (2 April 2018)
Current rankingNo. 56 (18 March 2019)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian OpenSF (2018)
French OpenQF (2010)
WimbledonF (2017)
US Open3R (2009, 2010, 2016, 2017)
Team competitions
Fed CupSF (2019) 31–20 (60.8%)
Last updated on: 30 March 2019.

She is popular among spectators and other players alike for her unconventional style of play, employing an extreme grip as well as two hands for both her forehand and backhand. She is also best known for her trademark forehand-slice, her winning deamenour and her exceptional shot-making abilities at the net. Niculescu currently holds the Open Era record of highest first serve percentage in a year (91%-in 2011, tied with Sara Errani).[1]

Niculescu has defeated many top 10 opponents throughout her career, having 25 wins against top 10 opponents to date.[1]

Niculescu was born in Slatina, Romania, but moved to Bucharest when she was four. She is currently coached by Călin Stelian Ciorbagiu.[1]

Contents

Tennis careerEdit

2002–2005: Junior yearsEdit

As a junior, Niculescu had the remarkable gift to win quite easily every final she reached. Thus, before reaching the age of 18, she won eleven ITF singles finals, losing only one set:

  • in Bucharest (Aug 2002), 6–1, 7–6 against Tsvetana Pironkova
  • in Cavtat (Apr 2003) 6–4, 6–1 against Darija Jurak
  • in Timişoara (Aug 2003) 6–2, 6–3 against Veronika Rizhik
  • in Albufeira (Feb 2004) 6–1, 3–6, 6–0 against Irina Kotkina
  • in Portimão (Feb 2004) 6–4, 7–6 against Nadja Pavić
  • in Bucharest (May 2004) 6–2, 6–2 against Simona Matei
  • in Iași (Aug 2004) 7–6, 6–0 against Raluca Olaru
  • in Cairo (Mar 2005) 6–4, 6–2 against Galina Fokina
  • in Ain Alsoukhna (Mar 2005) 6–3, 6–4 against Magdaléna Rybáriková
  • in Antalya (May 2005) 6–2, 6–2 against Ekaterina Dzehalevich
  • and in Coimbra (Aug 2005) 6–3, 6–1 against Aravane Rezaï.

She also won eight out of 14 ITF finals played in doubles, as a junior, in most of them having as a partner her older sister, Gabriela Niculescu. She played finals in girls' doubles in Roland Garros (2004, paired with Mădălina Gojnea) and twice in Wimbledon (2004 and 2005, paired with Marina Erakovic).

By the end of 2005, now already a senior player, she was No. 271 in the WTA rankings and No. 4 in Romania.

2006–2008: Constant progress as a senior, top 50Edit

Niculescu made her WTA debut in 2006 Istanbul, where she won to then junior Sabine Lisicki but could not pass the third qualification round. In 2007, she continued to play many ITF tournaments, and she also played in qualifications in all four Grand Slams and three other WTA tournaments, but only in Dubai she reached the main draw. Still, winning several ITF tournaments and gathering many small points, she finished the year 2007 in top 200.

In 2008, she reached the quarterfinals in Tashkent, and in all four Grand Slams she reached the first round, with round two reached in Wimbledon. Gathering points constantly on WTA Tour, and also including some smaller successes in ITF tournaments, Niculescu was ranked 48th in the world, and second in Romania, at the end of 2008.

2009: Setback and out of top 100Edit

Niculescu opened the season at the Brisbane International, where she lost to Tsvetana Pironkova in the first round in three sets.[1] She also lost in the first round of the Moorilla Hobart International to Alona Bondarenko. At the 2009 Australian Open, Niculescu beat Katie O'Brien in the first round, 6–4, 6–4, before losing to Sara Errani in the second, 2–6, 3–6. Alongside Sorana Cîrstea, Niculescu was the 14th seed in women's doubles; they lost to Nathalie Dechy and Mara Santangelo in the second round, 3–6, 3–6.

In the other three Grand Slams, she did not go past round one of the main draw. Her best results of the year were quarterfinals in Tashkent and Strasbourg.

At the Open GDF Suez held in Paris, Niculescu defeated Timea Bacsinszky in the first round, before losing to eventual champion Amélie Mauresmo in the second. She then took part in the Dubai Tennis Championships. She beat Peng Shuai in the first round in three sets, 3–6, 7–5, 6–2, and then lost to world No. 3, Jelena Janković, 3–6, 2–6. Niculescu also partnered Elena Vesnina in doubles, and the two reached the quarterfinals in women's doubles; they lost to Anabel Medina Garrigues and Francesca Schiavone. Niculescu had two consecutive first-round losses, at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells (fell to Anna-Lena Grönefeld) and Sony Ericsson Open in Miami (fell to Tamira Paszek). Partnering Alisa Kleybanova, she reached the quarterfinals at the BNP Paribas Open, where they lost to Maria Kirilenko and Flavia Pennetta. At the Sony Ericsson Open she partnered Kleybanova again, but they lost to second seeds Anabel Medina Garrigues and Virginia Ruano Pascual.

Niculescu withdrew from the Andalucía Tennis Experience and Barcelona Ladies Open due to a forearm injury.[1]

At the end of the year, she had slipped out of top 100.

2010: Comeback to top 100, first WTA semifinalEdit

 
Monica Niculescu at the 2010 US Open

In 2010, Monica started the season in Auckland, coming from qualifying. In the first round, she lost to fifth seed Virginie Razzano, 5–7, 4–6. In doubles, she partnered Ioana Raluca Olaru, and they defeated Anabel Medina Garrigues and Carla Suárez Navarro, 7–5, 7–5. In the second round, they lost to Cara Black and Liezel Huber, 3–6, 2–6.

At the Australian Open, she lost in the first round to Jelena Janković, 4–6, 0–6. In doubles, she partnered Chan Yung-jan and defeated Monique Adamczak and Nicole Kriz, 6–3, 6–1. The pair defeated Alla Kudryavtseva and Ekaterina Makarova in the second round, 6–4, 6–4. In the third round, they lost to sixth seeds Lisa Raymond and Rennae Stubbs, 5–7, 3–6.

Niculescu then played an ITF tournament in Midland, but lost in the first round to Eleni Daniilidou 4–6, 2–6.

In Memphis, she lost in the first round qualifying to Valérie Tétreault. In doubles, she reached the semifinals along with Riza Zalameda, losing to Vania King and Michaëlla Krajicek, 1–6, 4–6.

At Indian Wells, she lost in qualifying to Tamarine Tanasugarn. In doubles, together with Michaëlla Krajicek, she lost in first round to Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Yan Zi, 6–7, 2–6.

In Marbella failed to qualify in singles, but in doubles she partnered Sophie Lefèvre. They defeated Kristina Barrois and Ioana Raluca Olaru in the first round, 6–3, 4–6, [10–7]. However, in the second round, they lost to Virginia Ruano Pascual and Meghann Shaughnessy, 2–6, 4–6.

She made again her best in Tashkent, where she reached her first WTA semifinals but lost to Elena Vesnina.

Although in the first half of the year she was struggling between ranks 100 and 150, by the middle of the year she reached top 100 again and ended the year as No. 82 in the world, and No. 2 in Romania.

2011: Consistent game, advance to top 30Edit

At the Australian Open, Niculescu defeated Timea Bacsinszky in straight sets, 6–0, 6–3. Facing off against the 32nd seed, Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria, Niculescu cruised through the match winning 6–4, 6–1. In the third round, she lost to the 2010 French Open champion Francesca Schiavone, 0–6, 6–7.

Niculescu defeated Patricia Mayr-Achleitner in the first round and compatriot Alexandra Dulgheru in the second round, 6–3, 6–0, to advance to the third round of the US Open. In defeating Lucie Šafářová, 6–0, 6–1, Niculescu advanced to the fourth round of a Grand Slam singles competition for the first time in her career, where she lost 4–6, 3–6 to unseeded Angelique Kerber.

At the Tier-1 China Open, she shocked the world with a dominating victory over fourth seed Li Na, 6–4, 6–0 in the first round and advanced to the semifinals, where she lost to eventual runner-up, Andrea Petkovic.

She advanced to her first WTA final at the International tournament in Luxembourg, losing to Victoria Azarenka, 2–6, 2–6. En route to the final, she spent many hours on court with a 6–7, 7–5, 7–6 first-round victory over Karin Knapp, a second-round 7–6, 3–6, 6–1 win over Anabel Medina Garrigues, and a 7–5, 4–6, 6–3 win in three hours over 2010 finalist Anne Keothavong in the semifinals.

The end of the year found her as No. 30 in the world and No. 1 in Romania.

2012: Career high, small setback, still top 60Edit

At the Australian Open, Niculescu made it to the third round by defeating Alizé Cornet and Pauline Parmentier, but she was defeated by then–world No. 1, Caroline Wozniacki, 2–6, 2–6.

She reached quarterfinals in Doha, where she lost to Samantha Stosur.

Her best result was again the WTA final in Luxembourg, lost to Venus Williams.

Although in February Niculescu had reached rank No. 28, her career high so far, the inconsistent results during the season made her go down to world No. 58 by the end of the year.

2013: Steady position, first WTA titleEdit

Aside two WTA semifinals in Shenzhen and Monterrey, Niculescu won her first singles WTA title in Florianópolis.

She played in round one of all the Grand Slam events, but lost the games constantly.

Yet, winning enough games and points in WTA tournaments, she kept her Top 60 position, finishing the season as No. 59 in the WTA rankings.

2014: Second WTA title, top 50 againEdit

In all, Niculescu had an improving season, reaching round three at Australian Open, round two at Roland Garros and Wimbledon, quarterfinals in Shenzhen, Hobart and Florianópolis, and semifinals in Bucharest. The best result was her winning the WTA tournament in Guangzhou, as her second WTA title.

Thus she entered top 50 again by the end of the year.

2015: Tough matches, steady gameEdit

Much of early 2015 was particularly difficult for Niculescu, as she often faced difficult draws. For instance she drew world No. 1, Serena Williams, twice in a row in the second round of Indian Wells and Miami. While she managed to test Williams with a 5–7, 5–7 score, she was not able to win a set against her in either match. She also suffered first round losses at Shenzen, Hobart, the Australian Open, Dubai, Prague, and the French Open.[1]

Niculescu won the Marseille clay 100K ITF tournament in June. Shortly thereafter, she defeated first-seeded Agnieszka Radwańska 5–7, 6–4, 6–0 at the Aegon Open Nottingham WTA grass tournament to earn a place in the final where she lost to teenager Ana Konjuh 6–1, 4–6, 2–6. All five matches she played went to three sets. She then lost in the first round at Birmingham to the 10th seed, Barbora Strýcová.[1]

Niculescu earned a spot in the fourth round at the Wimbledon Championships for the first time, defeating Monica Puig 5–7, 6–3, 6–1, Jana Čepelová 6–3, 6–3, and Kristýna Plíšková 6–3, 7–5. This is the second time she has made it past the third round at a major. Despite winning the first set of her fourth-round match 6-1 and having a positive head-to-head record against the player, she was defeated by 15th-seeded Timea Bacsinszky, who took the next two sets. Bacsinszky has seen a dramatic improvement of her results, having recently also made the semifinals at the French Open.[2]

2016: Doubles successEdit

Niculescu reached a career-high ranking of 16 in doubles in July. She partnered with Sania Mirza to win in New Haven.[3]

2017: Wimbledon doubles final and first WTA 125 series crownEdit

She started her season at Shenzhen Open with a victory, defeating Zhang Kailin, but she lost her second match to Wang Qiang.

Next week, Niculescu played at Hobart International, where she made it to the final and lost to Elise Mertens, 3–6, 1–6.

At the Australian Open, she lost to Anna Blinkova in the first round. Then, Niculescu played doubles with Abigail Spears, but they lost in the first round to Andrea Petkovic and Mirjana Lučić-Baroni. She won the WTA 125 Series Open at Limoges on November 12.

Playing styleEdit

Nicolescu plays right-handed, with powerful topspin backhand and unpredictable forehand slice. She has great volleying ability and great footwork.

Personal lifeEdit

Her mother, Cristiana Silvia Niculescu is a pharmaceutical sales representative; her father Mihai Niculescu is an engineer.[1] Niculescu has an older sister, Gabriela, who was a professional tennis player and attended University of Idaho, after transferring from USC after her junior year.[1]

Monica Niculescu cited Martina Hingis and Andre Agassi as her tennis idols.[1] She enjoys shopping, movies, reading, and spending time with her family.[1] Niculescu listed her favourite movie as The Butterfly Effect with Ashton Kutcher.[1]

Significant finalsEdit

Grand Slam finalsEdit

Doubles: 1 (1 runner-up)Edit

Result Year Championship Surface Partner Opponents Score
Loss 2017 Wimbledon Grass   Chan Hao-ching   Ekaterina Makarova
  Elena Vesnina
0–6, 0–6

Premier-Mandatory/Premier-5 finalsEdit

Doubles: 3 (3 runner-ups)Edit

Result Year Championship Surface Partner Opponents Score
Loss 2015 Wuhan Hard   Irina-Camelia Begu   Martina Hingis
  Sania Mirza
2−6, 3−6
Loss 2016 Canada Hard   Simona Halep   Ekaterina Makarova
  Elena Vesnina
3–6, 6–7(5–7)
Loss 2017 Cincinnati Open Hard   Hsieh Su-wei   Chan Yung-jan
  Martina Hingis
6–4, 4–6, [7–10]

WTA career finalsEdit

Singles: 8 (3 titles, 5 runner-ups)Edit

Legend
Grand Slam tournaments (0–0)
Tour Championships (0–0)
Premier Mandatory & Premier 5 (0–0)
Premier (0–0)
International (3–5)
Result W–L Date Tournament Tier Surface Opponent Score
Loss 0–1 Oct 2011 Luxembourg Open International Hard (i)   Victoria Azarenka 2–6, 2–6
Loss 0–2 Oct 2012 Luxembourg Open International Hard (i)   Venus Williams 2–6, 3–6
Win 1–2 Mar 2013 Brasil Tennis Cup, Brasil International Hard   Olga Puchkova 6–2, 4–6, 6–4
Win 2–2 Sep 2014 Guangzhou Open, China International Hard   Alizé Cornet 6–4, 6–0
Loss 2–3 Jun 2015 Nottingham Open, U.K. International Grass   Ana Konjuh 6–1, 4–6, 2–6
Loss 2–4 Sep 2016 Korea Open, South Korea International Hard   Lara Arruabarrena 0–6, 6–2, 0–6
Win 3–4 Oct 2016 Luxembourg Open International Hard (i)   Petra Kvitová 6–4, 6–0
Loss 3–5 Jan 2017 Hobart International, Australia International Hard   Elise Mertens 3–6, 1–6

Doubles: 25 (9 titles, 16 runners-up)Edit

Legend (pre/post 2009)
Grand Slam tournaments (0–1)
Tour Championships (0–0)
Tier I / Premier Mandatory & Premier 5 (0–3)
Tier II / Premier (1–4)
Tier III, IV & V / International (8–8)
Result W–L Date Tournament Tier Surface Partner Opponents Score
Loss 0–1 Aug 2008 Connecticut Open, New Haven, United States Tier II Hard   Sorana Cîrstea   Květa Peschke
  Lisa Raymond
6–4, 5–7, [7–10]
Win 1–1 Jul 2009 Hungarian Ladies Open, Budapest International Clay   Alisa Kleybanova   Alona Bondarenko
  Kateryna Bondarenko
6–4, 7–6(7–5)
Loss 1–2 Aug 2009 Bank of the West Classic, Stanford, United States Premier Hard   Chan Yung-jan   Serena Williams
  Venus Williams
1–6, 4–6
Loss 1–3 Jan 2010 Hobart International, Australia International Hard   Chan Yung-jan   Květa Peschke
  Chuang Chia-jung
6–3, 3–6, [7–10]
Loss 1–4 Jul 2010 Prague Open, Czech Republic International Clay   Ágnes Szávay   Timea Bacsinszky
  Tathiana Garbin
5–7, 6–7(4–7)
Loss 1–5 Jul 2011 Baku Cup, Azerbaijan International Hard   Galina Voskoboeva   Mariya Koryttseva
  Tatiana Poutchek
3–6, 6–2, [8–10]
Win 2–5 Jan 2012 Hobart International, Australia International Hard   Irina-Camelia Begu   Chuang Chia-jung
  Marina Erakovic
6–7(4–7), 7–6(7–4), [10–5]
Loss 2–6 Sep 2012 Guangzhou Open, China International Hard   Jarmila Gajdošová   Tamarine Tanasugarn
  Zhang Shuai
6–2, 2–6, [8–10]
Loss 2–7 Oct 2012 Luxembourg Open International Hard (i)   Irina-Camelia Begu   Andrea Hlaváčková
  Lucie Hradecká
3–6, 4–6
Loss 2–8 Jun 2013 Eastbourne International, United Kingdom Premier Grass   Klára Koukalová   Nadia Petrova
  Katarina Srebotnik
3-6, 3-6
Win 3–8 Jan 2014 Shenzhen Open, China International Hard   Klára Koukalová   Lyudmyla Kichenok
  Nadiia Kichenok
6–3, 6–4
Win 4–8 Jan 2014 Hobart International, Australia (2) International Hard   Klára Koukalová   Lisa Raymond
  Zhang Shuai
6–2, 6–7(5–7), [10–8]
Loss 4–9 Apr 2014 Katowice Open, Poland International Hard (i)   Klára Koukalová   Yuliya Beygelzimer
  Olga Savchuk
4–6, 7–5, [7–10]
Loss 4–10 Jan 2015 Hobart International, Australia International Hard   Vitalia Diatchenko   Kiki Bertens
  Johanna Larsson
5–7, 3–6
Loss 4–11 Oct 2015 Wuhan Open, China Premier 5 Hard   Irina-Camelia Begu   Martina Hingis
  Sania Mirza
2−6, 3−6
Loss 4–12 Oct 2015 Kremlin Cup, Moscow, Russia Premier Hard (i)   Irina-Camelia Begu   Daria Kasatkina
  Elena Vesnina
3–6, 7–6(9–7), [5–10]
Win 5–12 Jan 2016 Shenzhen Open, China (2) International Hard   Vania King   Xu Yifan
  Zheng Saisai
6−1, 6−4
Win 6–12 Jul 2016 Citi Open, Washington DC, U.S. International Hard   Yanina Wickmayer   Shuko Aoyama
  Risa Ozaki
6–4, 6–3
Loss 6–13 Jul 2016 Rogers Cup, Montreal, Canada Premier 5 Hard   Simona Halep   Ekaterina Makarova
  Elena Vesnina
3–6, 6–7(5–7)
Win 7–13 Aug 2016 Connecticut Open, New Haven, United States Premier Hard   Sania Mirza   Kateryna Bondarenko
  Chuang Chia-jung
7–5, 6–4
Loss 7–14 Oct 2016 Luxembourg Open International Hard (i)   Patricia Maria Țig   Kiki Bertens
  Johanna Larsson
6–4, 5–7, [9–11]
Win 8–14 Apr 2017 Ladies Open Biel Bienne, Switzerland International Hard (i)   Hsieh Su-wei   Timea Bacsinszky
  Martina Hingis
5–7, 6–3, [10–7]
Loss 8–15 Jul 2017 Wimbledon, United Kingdom Grand Slam Grass   Chan Hao-ching   Ekaterina Makarova
  Elena Vesnina
0–6, 0–6
Loss 8–16 Aug 2017 Cincinnati Open, United States Premier 5 Hard   Hsieh Su-wei   Chan Yung-jan
  Martina Hingis
6–4, 4–6, [7–10]
Win 9–16 Feb 2019 Thailand Open, Hua Hin International Hard   Irina-Camelia Begu   Anna Blinkova
  Wang Yafan
2–6, 6–1, [12–10]

WTA 125 series finalsEdit

Singles: 1 (1 title)Edit

Result W–L Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Win 1–0 Nov 2017 Open de Limoges, France Hard (i)   Antonia Lottner 6–4, 6–2

ITF finals (39 titles, 21 runner–ups)Edit

Singles (18 titles, 5 runner–ups)Edit

Legend
$100,000 tournaments
$75,000 tournaments
$50,000 tournaments
$25,000 tournaments
$15,000 tournaments
$10,000 tournaments
Finals by surface
Hard (9–2)
Clay (9–3)
Grass (0–0)
Carpet (0–0)
Outcome No. Datexf Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Winner 1. 12 August 2002 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Tsvetana Pironkova 6–1, 7–6(7–4)
Winner 2. 9 April 2003 Cavtat, Croatia Clay   Darija Jurak 6–4, 6–1
Winner 3. 25 August 2003 Timișoara, Romania Clay   Veronica Rizhik 6–2, 6–3
Winner 4. 9 February 2004 Albufeira, Portugal Hard   Irina Kotkina 6–1, 3–6, 6–0
Winner 5. 16 February 2004 Portimao, Portugal Hard   Nadja Pavic 6–4, 7–6(7–4)
Winner 6. 17 May 2004 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Simona Matei 6–2, 6–2
Winner 7. 16 August 2004 Iași, Romania Clay   Raluca Olaru 7–6(7–5), 6–0
Winner 8. 15 March 2005 Cairo, Egypt Clay   Galina Fokina 6–4, 6–2
Winner 9. 21 March 2005 Ain Alsoukhna, Egypt Clay   Magdaléna Rybáriková 6–3, 6–4
Winner 10. 9 May 2005 Antalya, Turkey Clay   Ekaterina Dzehalevich 6–2, 6–2
Winner 11. 15 August 2005 Coimbra, Portugal Hard   Aravane Rezaï 6–3, 6–1
Runner-up 1. 3 July 2006 Stuttgart, Germany Clay   Yevgenia Savranska 6-7(4–7), 5–7
Runner-up 2. 17 July 2006 Darmstadt, Germany Clay   Magda Mihalache 0–6, 1–6
Runner-up 3. 8 August 2006 Coimbra, Portugal Hard   Kelly Liggan 0–6, 6-7(7–9)
Winner 12. 24 September 2007 Granada, Spain Hard   María José Martínez Sánchez 6–3, 6–4
Winner 13. 22 October 2007 Istanbul, Turkey Hard (i)   Oxana Lyubtsova 6–2, 6–0
Winner 14. 5 November 2007 Port Pirie, Australia Hard   Hwang I-hsuan 6–1, 6–2
Winner 15. 19 November 2007 Mount Gambier, Australia Hard   Lee Ye-ra 6–3, 6–1
Runner-up 4. 3 November 2008 Krakow, Poland Hard (i)   Anne Keothavong 6–7(4–7), 6–4, 3–6
Runner-up 5. 19 July 2010 Petange, Luxembourg Clay   Mathilde Johansson 3–6, 3–6
Winner 16. 19 November 2012 Nantes, France Hard (i)   Yulia Putintseva 6–2, 6–3
Winner 17. 1 June 2015 Marseille, France Clay   Pauline Parmentier 6–2, 7–5
Winner 18. 26 October 2015 Poitiers, France Hard (i)   Pauline Parmentier 7–5, 6–2

Doubles (21–16)Edit

Legend
$100,000 tournaments
$75,000 tournaments
$50,000 tournaments
$25,000 tournaments
$15,000 tournaments
$10,000 tournaments
Finals by surface
Hard (4–3)
Clay (17–13)
Grass (0–0)
Carpet (0–0)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
Runner-up 1. 12 August 2002 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Radoslava Topalova
  Virginia Trifonova
4–6, 6–3, 3–6
Winner 1. 26 August 2002 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Iveta Gerlová
  Nina Nittinger
6–2, 6–2
Runner-up 2. 10 March 2003 Makarska, Croatia Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Stefanie Haidner
  Daniela Klemenschits
6–3, 6–7(7–9), 4–6
Winner 2. 31 March 2003 Makarska, Croatia Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Darija Jurak
  Maria Jedlickova
6–2, 6–2
Runner-up 3. 14 April 2003 Dubrovnik, Croatia Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Mervana Jugic-Salkic
  Darija Jurak
2–6, 6–4, 2–6
Runner-up 4. 11 August 2003 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Anna Bastrikova
  Elena Vesnina
4–6, 4–6
Runner-up 5. 11 August 2003 Timișoara, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Julia Acs
  Vasilisa Davydova
4–6, 3–6
Winner 3. 17 May 2004 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Lenore Lazaroiu
  Andra Savu
6–4, 6–2
Winner 4. 13 July 2004 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Liana Ungur
  Iris Ichim
6–4, 6–1
Winner 5. 9 August 2004 Târgu Mureș, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Simona Matei
  Barbara Pócza
7–5, 6–1
Winner 6. 16 August 2004 Iași, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Nadine Schlotterer
  Eva Valkova
7–5, 6–1
Winner 7. 15 March 2005 Cairo, Egypt Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Hanna Andreyeva
  Valeria Bondarenko
6–2, 6–3
Winner 8. 15 March 2005 Ain El Soukhna, Egypt Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Laura-Ramona Husaru
  Sarah Raab
6–1, 6–1
Runner-up 6. 11 April 2005 Civitavecchia, Italy Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Lucie Hradecka
  Sandra Zahlavova
4–6, 3–6
Winner 9. 2 May 2005 Antalya, Turkey Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Irina Buryachok
  Olga Panova
6–3, 6–4
Winner 9. 9 May 2005 Antalya, Turkey Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Renata Kucerkova
  Kathrin Woerle-Scheller
6–7, 6–0, 6–0
Runner-up 7. 15 October 2005 Sevilla, Spain Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Sara Errani
  María José Martínez Sánchez
2–6, 6–7(5-7)
Runner-up 8. 3 April 2006 Athens, Greece Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Olga Brozda
  Margit Ruutel
6–2, 4–6, 2–6
Winner 10. 9 May 2006 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Sorana Cirstea
  Diana Buzean
6–3, 6–0
Winner 11. 20 June 2006 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Gabriela Niculescu   Raluca Ciulei
  Neda Kozic
6–2, 6–1
Winner 12. 3 July 2006 Stuttgart, Germany Clay   Renata Voráčová   Eva Fislová
  Stanislava Hrozenská
6–2, 6–7(4-7), 7–5
Winner 13. 17 July 2006 Darmstadt, Germany Clay   Yevgenia Savranska   Daniela Klemenschits
  Sandra Klemenschits
1–6, 6–0, 6–1
Winner 14. 4 September 2006 Mestre, Italy Clay   Renata Voráčová   Margalita Chakhnashvili-Ranzinger
  Tatjana Maria
6–4, 3–6, 6–4
Winner 14. 2 April 2007 Putignano, Italy Hard   Andreja Klepač   Jessica Kirkland
  Carmen Klaschka
6–2, 7–5
Runners-up 9. 17 July 2006 Jounieh, Lebanon Clay   Madalina Gojnea   Tatiana Poutchek
  Anastasiya Yakimova
7–5, 6–0
Winner 15. 10 July 2007 Darmstadt, Germany Clay   Ekaterina Dzehalevich   Hilary Barte
  Tatjana Priachin
6–4, 7–5
Runners-up 10. 31 July 2007 Bucharest, Romania Clay   Ekaterina Dzehalevich   Sorana Cirstea
  Ágnes Szatmári
6–0, 4–6, ret.
Runners-up 11. 17 September 2007 Madrid, Spain Clay   Yevgenia Savranska   María José Martínez Sánchez
  Arantxa Parra Santonja
6–1, 6–7(4–7)
Runners-up 12. 10 July 2007 Granada, Spain Clay   Alexandra Dulgheru   Marta Marrero
  María José Martínez Sánchez
4–6, 1–6
Winner 16. 19 November 2007 Mount Gambier, Australia Hard   Antonia Matic   Sophie Ferguson
  Trudi Musgrave
5–7, 6–3, [10-8]
Winner 17. 10 December 2007 Dubai, United Arab Emirates Hard   Marina Eraković   Yuliana Fedak
  Anna Lapushchenkova
7–6(7–1), 6–4
Runners-up 13. 20 October 2008 Poitiers, France Hard (i)   Akgul Amanmuradova   Petra Cetkovská
  Lucie Šafářová
4–6, 4–6
Runners-up 14. 27 October 2008 Bratislava, Slovakia Hard (i)   Akgul Amanmuradova   Andrea Hlaváčková
  Lucie Hradecká
6–7(1–7), 1–6
Runners-up 15. 5 July 2010 Biarritz, France Clay   Lourdes Domínguez Lino   Sharon Fichman
  Julia Görges
5–7, 4–6
Winner 18. 19 July 2010 Petange, Luxembourg Clay   Sharon Fichman   Sophie Lefèvre
  Laura Thorpe
6–4, 6–2
Runners-up 16. 5 July 2013 Poitiers, France Hard (i)   Christina McHale   Lucie Hradecká
  Michaëlla Krajicek
6–7(5–7), 6–2
Winner 19. 31 October 2015 Poitiers, France Hard (i)   Cristina-Andreea Mitu   Stéphanie Foretz
  Amandine Hesse
6–7(5–7), 7–6(7–2), [10–8]

Singles performance timelineEdit

Current up to 2018 Miami Open.

Tournament 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 W-L
Grand Slam tournaments
Australian Open A A 1R 2R 1R 3R 3R 1R 3R 1R 2R 1R 1R 8–11
French Open A A 1R 1R Q3 1R 1R 1R 2R 1R 1R 1R A 1–9
Wimbledon A A 2R 1R 2R 2R 1R 1R 1R 4R 2R 1R 1R 7–11
US Open A A 1R 1R 1R 4R 1R 1R 2R 2R 3R 3R 1R 9–11
Win–Loss 0–0 0–0 1–4 1–4 1–3 6–4 2–4 0–4 4−4 4−4 4−4 2–4 0–3 25–42
Year-end championship
WTA Tour Championships Did Not Qualify !0–0
Olympic Games
Summer Olympics Not Held A Not Held A Not Held 2R NH 1–0
WTA Premier Mandatory tournaments
Indian Wells A A A 1R LQ 2R 2R 2R 2R 2R 3R 2R 1R 6–9
Miami A A A 1R A 2R 2R 1R 1R 2R 4R 1R 3R 6–9
Madrid Not Held 1R A 1R 1R Q1 1R LQ 1R 1R A 0–6
Beijing Not Tier I A Q1 SF 2R 2R 1R 1R LQ 2R 7–6
WTA Premier 5 tournaments
Doha Not Tier I 2R Not Held NP5 QF 2R 3R NP5 3R NP5 3R 11–6
Rome A A 2R 1R A A 1R 1R LQ LQ 1R 1R A 1–6
Canada A A 2R 1R 1R LQ Absent 2R A 1R 2–5
Cincinnati Not Tier I A 2R 1R A 2R LQ Q1 Q1 Q1 Q1 2–3
Wuhan Not Held 2R A 1R 1-2
Dubai Not Tier I 2R A LQ Not Premier 5 1R NP5 A 1–2
Tokyo Absent 1R A NP5 0–1
Year-end ranking 222 179 47 101 83 30 58 60 47 39 39 79

Doubles performance timelineEdit

Updated up to 2016 Internazionali BNL d'Italia

Tournament 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 W-L
Grand Slam tournaments
Australian Open A 2R 3R 2R QF 3R 2R 2R 1R 11–8
French Open A 2R 3R QF 3R 2R 3R 2R 1R A 12–8
Wimbledon A 2R 3R 2R 2R 2R 1R 2R 2R 1R 8–9
US Open A 2R 3R 3R 1R 1R 1R 2R 2R 3R 9–9
Win–Loss 0-0 0-0 3–3 7–4 8–4 4–4 5–4 4–4 4-4 3–4 2–3 40–34
Year-end championship
WTA Tour Championships Did Not Qualify 0–0
Olympic Games
Summer Olympics NH A NH A NH 0–0
WTA Premier Mandatory tournaments
Indian Wells A QF 1R 1R 2R 1R 1R 2R 2R 5–8
Miami A 1R 2R 2R SF 1R 2R QF SF 12–8
Madrid NH NH NH 2R A 1R 2R A 2R 1R 3–5
Beijing Tier Tier Tier A 1R 1R A 1R 0–3
WTA Premier-5 tournaments
Dubai not Premier 5 QF A 2R NP5 QF NP5 5–3
Doha A QF NH NP5 1R A NP5 2R 3–3
Rome A 1R QF 2R 2R SF 7–5
Cincinnati A 1R SF QF 1R A 1R 1R 1R 5–7
Montreal/Toronto A 1R 1R SF 2R A F 4–4
Tokyo A 1R A NP5 0–1
Wuhan NH 1R F 3-2
Year-end ranking 159 131 35 30 30 50 27 70 38 33

WTA Tour career earningsEdit

Year Grand Slam
singles titles
WTA
singles titles
Total
singles titles
Earnings ($) Money list rank
2003 0 0 0 6,343 493
2004 0 0 0 9,073[permanent dead link] 433[permanent dead link]
2005 0 0 0 ? [1] ? [2]
2006 0 0 0 ? [3][permanent dead link] ? [4][permanent dead link]
2007 0 0 0 ? [5][permanent dead link] ? [6][permanent dead link]
2008 0 0 0 249,035[permanent dead link] 67[permanent dead link]
2009 0 0 0 315,414 67
2010 0 0 0 251,188 77
2011 0 0 0 549,493[permanent dead link] 38[permanent dead link]
2012 0 0 0 450,393[permanent dead link] 45[permanent dead link]
2013 0 1 1 406,372 62
2014 0 1 1 582,694 44
2015 0 0 0 667,180 ? [7]
2016* 0 0 0 335,909 37
Career* 0 2 2 3,480,360 97

*as of 23 May 2016

Record against other playersEdit

Niculescu's win-loss record against certain players who have been ranked world No. 10 or higher is as follows:

Player Record Win % Hard Clay Grass Last Match
No. 1 ranked players
  Maria Sharapova 1–0 100% 1–0 0–0 0–0 Won (4–6, 6–4, 6–3) at Doha 2018
  Victoria Azarenka 0–5 0% 0–4 0–1 0–0 Loss (1–6, 4–6) at 2013 Australian Open
  Angelique Kerber 1–3 25% 1–3 0–0 0–0 Loss (6–0, 1–6, 2-6) at 2013 Linz
  Kim Clijsters 0–1 0% 0–0 0–0 0–1 Loss (5–7, 5–7) at 2011 's-Hertogenbosch
  Ana Ivanovic 0–2 0% 0–1 0–1 0–0 Loss (5–7, 3–6) at 2012 Linz
  Jelena Janković 2–5 29% 2–4 0–1 0–0 Win (3-6, 6–4, 7-5) at 2016 Doha
  Amélie Mauresmo 0–1 0% 0–1 0–0 0–0 Loss (1–6, 2–6) at 2009 Paris
  Serena Williams 0–2 0% 0–2 0–0 0–0 Loss (4–6, 1–6) at 2015 Miami
  Venus Williams 0–1 0% 0–1 0–0 0–0 Loss (2–6, 3–6) at 2012 Luxembourg
  Caroline Wozniacki 0–6 0% 0–6 0–0 0–0 Loss (3–6, 1–6) at 2013 Luxembourg
No. 2 ranked players
  Simona Halep 0–2 0% 0–0 0–2 0–0 Loss (2–6, 6–4, 1–6) at 2014 Bucharest
  Petra Kvitová 1–2 33% 1–0 0–1 0–1 Loss (6–2, 6–7(5–7), 2-6) at 2016 Stuttgart
  Na Li 1–1 50% 1–1 0–0 0–0 Loss (5–7, 6–4, 4–6 ) at 2012 Shenzhen
  Agnieszka Radwańska 1–4 20% 0–4 0–0 1–0 Loss (1–6, 5–7) at 2016 Montréal
  Vera Zvonareva 1–1 50% 1–1 0–0 0–0 Win (7–5, 3–2 ret.) at 2012 Doha
No. 3 ranked players
No. 4 ranked players
  Kimiko Date-Krumm 1–1 50% 1–1 0–0 0–0 Win (6–2, 2–1 ret.) at 2013 Monterrey
  Francesca Schiavone 0–4 0% 0–3 0–1 0–0 Loss (3–6, 5–7) at 2012 Stuttgart
  Samantha Stosur 0–7 0% 0–7 0–0 0–0 Loss (3–6, 2–6) at 2015 Beijing
No. 5 ranked players
  Anna Chakvetadze 1–1 50% 1–1 0–0 0–0 Loss (0–6, 4–6) at 2012 Hobart
  Sara Errani 1–4 20% 1–2 0–2 0–0 Loss (7–5, 1–6, 2-6) at 2015 Bucharest
  Daniela Hantuchová 1–0 100% 1–0 0–0 0–0 Win (6–1, 6–3) at 2012 Luxembourg
  Lucie Šafářová 2–0 100% 2–0 0–0 0–0 Win (6–2, 6–0) at 2012 Beijing
No. 6 ranked players
  Flavia Pennetta 0–3 0% 0–2 0–0 0–1 Loss (1–6, 4–6) at 2015 US Open
  Carla Suárez Navarro 0–5 0% 0–4 0–1 0–0 Loss (7-5, 3-6, 4–6) at 2015 Wuhan
No. 7 ranked players
  Marion Bartoli 0–1 0% 0–1 0–0 0–0 Loss (6-2, 3–6, 2–6) at 2011 Indian Wells
  Karolína Plíšková 2–1 67% 2–1 0–0 0–0 Loss (4-6, 6–4, 3–6) at 2016 Fed Cup
  Patty Schnyder 0–1 0% 0–1 0–0 0–0 Loss (1-6, 5–7) at 2008 Montréal
  Roberta Vinci 0–1 0% 0–0 0–0 0–1 Loss (3–6, 7–6(7–4), 0-6) at 2012 's-Hertogenbosch
No. 8 ranked players
  Ekaterina Makarova 1–4 20% 0–3 1–1 0–0 Loss (7-5, 6-7(3–7), 3-6) at 2014 Indian Wells
  Alicia Molik 0–1 0% 0–0 0–1 0–0 Loss (6-4, 6-7(5–7), 0-6) at 2010 Barcelona
No. 9 ranked players
  Timea Bacsinszky 4–3 57% 2–0 2–1 0–2 Loss (6-4, 2-6, 1-6) at 2016 Wimbledon
  Madison Keys 1–0 100% 1–0 0–0 0–0 Win (6–1, 2–6, 7-6(8–6)) at 2013 Washington
  Andrea Petkovic 2–3 40% 0–2 2–1 0–0 Loss (6-0, 6-7(1–7), 3-6) at 2016 Fed Cup
No. 10 ranked players
  Dominika Cibulková 0–1 0% 0–1 0–0 0–0 Loss (4–6, 3-6) at 2008 Los Angeles
  Maria Kirilenko 2–2 50% 2–2 0–0 0–0 Loss (3-6, 0-6) at 2012 Dubai
Total 25–79 24.04% 19–59 5–14 1–6

Top-10 wins per seasonEdit

Season 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 Total
Wins 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 1 1 4
# Player Rank Event Surface Round Score
2011
1.   Li Na No. 5 Beijing, China Hard 1st round 6–4, 6–0
2012
2.   Vera Zvonareva No. 8 Doha, Qatar Hard 2nd round 7–5, 3–2 ret.
2016
3.   Petra Kvitová No. 9 Fed Cup, Cluj-Napoca, Romania Hard (i) RR 6–3, 6–4
2017
4.   Johanna Konta No. 7 Beijing, China Hard 1st round 6–1, 6–2

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit