Angelique Kerber: The Woman with an Unnatural Playing Style

Angelique Kerber

In tennis in general, and even more so in women’s tennis, playing left-handed must be seen as quite a significant advantage and this is the reason why some parents and coaches with big goals switch their natural-born right-handed prodigies to left-handers at a young age.

Angelique’s service seems rather a bit unnatural as she was born right-handed and was switched to a left-handed player in her youth.

Kerber was born on 18 January 1988 in Bremen to Polish parents Sławomir Kerber, from Poznań, and Beata, who is also her manager. She has one sister, Jessica. She grew up in Kiel, where her family stayed in an apartment in a training academy where her parents work, and started playing tennis at age three, eventually joining the junior circuit.

She has been ranked as high as world No. 1, for a total of 34 weeks, and won three Major titles at the 2016 Australian Open, the 2016 US Open, and the 2018 Wimbledon Championships. She is also an Olympic silver medalist and was the year-end world number one in 2016.

Kerber started her tennis career at a young age and turned professional at 15. Despite not holding any junior title to her name, she impressed many sports experts with her skills who predicted her to reach No. 1 in the coming years. She won her first WTA title in 2012 at the Open GDF Suez and slowly started moving up the rankings. By 2016, she had won many WTA titles and had already entered the Top 10 rankings.

Her breakthrough came in 2016 when she won her first Major at the Australian Open after defeating Serena Williams, who was world No. 1 at that point. Kerber continued her winning streak by sealing a victory at the US Open as well and remained indomitable throughout the season. Despite struggling with form in 2017, she recovered sharply and quickly added a Wimbledon championship to her name in 2018. Today, she has established herself as one of the most successful female tennis players in the world and was listed among the highest-paid athletes by Forbes in 2017.

Angelique Kerber was rumored to be dating her longtime coach Torben Beltz, but neither of them has confirmed the relationship. The rumors died down after Kerber switched to a new coach in 2017. Kerber has revealed she’s welcomed her first child, a baby daughter, with partner Franco Bianco. The tennis ace, 35, took to Instagram on Monday to share the happy news, revealing they’ve named their little girl Liana.

Kerber is actively involved in many charities, and she is also the brand ambassador for UNICEF. She has opened her tennis academy in Poland, which is called the Angelique Kerber Tennis Academy.

Kerber is a defensive baseliner, who has been noted for her speed, agility, athleticism, and footwork. She is known for her counterpunching style of play, extending rallies to attempt to draw an error out of more aggressive players and to be able to hit low-risk winners with ease.

Kerber has powerful groundstrokes, allowing her to hit winners from frequently defensive positions. Her forehand is widely considered her most dangerous weapon, with her being able to hit powerful shots with disguise and speed; she is capable of hitting extreme angles with her forehand, which is responsible for many of the winners she accumulates on the court. Her forehand is hit with a short backswing, allowing her to flatten out her forehand, and generate considerable power.

Her best shot is her forehand down the line. Kerber is known for hitting her backhand whilst squatting, allowing her to generate considerable power and to create sharp angles on the court; she typically utilizes her backhand for defensive purposes, however. Her serve is considered her major weakness, rarely serving aces and hitting, on average, fewer service winners than many of her fellow players, with her first serve speed typically peaking at just 104 mph (167 km/h).

Her second serve is a particular weakness, and is highly susceptible to attack, meaning that she rarely wins more than 50 percent of second serve points.

Despite her weaknesses on serve, Kerber is proficient at defending her serve with her outstanding athleticism. Kerber, however, is one of the best returners on the WTA Tour, ranking consistently in the top 50 players based on a percentage of return points won.

Kerber experiences her greatest success when she plays with an aggressive mindset, despite her defensive playing style; her occasional slumps in form can be attributed to an over-reliance upon her defensive skills, and an unwillingness to play points aggressively. Kerber’s favorite surface is grass, as the fast pace and low bounce afforded on grass courts suit her defensive playing style, although she has had success on hard courts, as well.

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