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Alison Riske

Alison Riske
Alison serving at the 2013 Wimbledon Championships
Country  United States
Residence Atlanta, United States
Born (1990-07-03) July 3, 1990
Pittsburgh, United States
Height 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)
Turned pro 2009
Plays Right-handed (two-handed backhand)
Prize money 1,040,872
Career record 216–157
Career titles 1 WTA, 6 ITF
Highest ranking No. 40 (June 9, 2014)
Current ranking No. 44 (October 13, 2014)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 3R (2014)
French Open 2R (2014)
Wimbledon 3R (2013, 2014)
US Open 4R (2013)
Career record 46–62
Career titles 1 ITF
Highest ranking 100 (July 7, 2014)
Current ranking 100 (August 18, 2014)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open 3R (2014)
French Open 3R (2014)
Wimbledon 2R (2014)
US Open 2R (2013)
Last updated on: 18 August 2014.

Alison Riske (born July 3, 1990 in Pittsburgh) is an American professional tennis player. She has won one WTA title, six singles and one doubles title on the ITF tour. She has reached the third round of the Australian Open in 2014, the third round at Wimbledon in 2013 and 2014 and the fourth round of the US Open in 2014. She reached her career high singles ranking of world number 40 on June 9, 2014 and she won her first WTA tour title on October 12, 2014, when she won the Tianjin Open.


  • Early life and career 1
  • Professional career 2
    • 2009–11 2.1
    • 2013 2.2
    • 2014 2.3
  • WTA career finals 3
    • Singles: 1 (1 title) 3.1
  • Other finals 4
    • ITF Circuit singles finals: 10 (6–4) 4.1
    • ITF Circuit doubles finals: 4 (1–3) 4.2
  • Singles performance timeline 5
  • Doubles performance timeline 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8

Early life and career

The daughter of Al and Carol Riske,[1] she first played tennis at the age of 3 years old after her dad took her out to hit.[2] Her father worked in the Secret Service and later as an FBI investigator, while her mother was a school teacher, but both are now retired.[3] Her sister, Sarah, is also a tennis player who played for Vanderbilt and had a brief professional career,[2] reaching as high as No. 372.[4] Her brother, Dan, played college tennis for West Liberty State,[5] and is now an accountant.[3]

Educated by the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School,[5] she played the fall of 2006 for Peters Township High School, where she led the girls' tennis team to the Pennsylvania State championship, and won the championship in singles.[1] The following year, she won the USTA National Collegiate Clay Court Championship to earn a spot in the US Open qualifying draw, where she won her first match over Sorana Cîrstea before losing to Julie Ditty. She also won the ITA Summer Claycourt Championship and finished second at the USTA National Hardcourts that year. In early 2008, she earned the No. 1 ranking in her country in Girls 18s competition.[6] She got her first taste of the professional circuit later that year, when she served as a hitting partner for the United States Fed Cup team in their semifinal against Russia.[7]

Riske was coached by Brandon Stewart at Peters Township when she won the state title in 2006. Stewart currently resides in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and coaches at Oxford Athletic Club, which is considered one of the premier tennis coaching facilities in the Pittsburgh area. In her early career, Riske was coached by Janice Irwin, coach of the girls' tennis team at nearby Upper St. Clair High School.[8] 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 center in Boca Raton, Florida as well as Van Der Meer Tennis Academy in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. She returned to training with Yves Boulais at the end of 2012 and currently trains with him at the JTCC Tennis Academy in College Park, Maryland.

Professional career


Alison Riske in action during the 2010 Bank of the West Classic.

Riske came into 2009 ranked 895 in the world.[9] A senior in the class of 2009, she had signed a letter of intent to play college tennis at Vanderbilt University.[6]

In May, 2009, Riske began a run on the ITF Women's circuit. As a qualifier, she reached the semifinals of a pro tournament in Indian Harbour 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, Riske's ranking had improved to 344, over 500 places from when she started the year. She was granted a wildcard into the qualifying tournament of the US Open, but fell in three sets to Yulia Fedossova. Before the US Open, Riske made the decision to give up her scholarship to Vanderbilt and turn professional largely in part due to her breakthrough year.[10] 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.[9]

Riske began 2010, her first full season as a professional, by reaching the semifinals of an ITF event in Rancho Mirage. She played in several qualifying tournaments for WTA events with little success until June, when she qualified for the Aegon Classic, a grass court event, and went on to have her professional breakthrough, earning wins over Aleksandra Wozniak, Anna Chakvetadze and Yanina Wickmayer before losing in three sets to Maria Sharapova in the semifinals. This led to her being offered a main draw wildcard to Wimbledon,[3] her Grand Slam debut, where she lost in a rematch against Wickmayer in the first round.

In October 2010, Riske completed an impressive run of winning an ITF 75k, 50K and 50K in three straight weeks.

In 2011, Riske reached the finals of 50k in Indian Harbour Beach, Florida. A few weeks later she had success on grass reaching the semis of Nottingham and quarter finals of a WTA event Aegon Classic. Riske completed 2011 with a successful run in Europe winning a 50k in Joué-lès-Tours and Limoges and finishing the year ranked 136.


At the 2013 US Open, Riske caused a big upset when she defeated former Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitová in the third round, losing just three games in the process and none in the second.[11] She subsequently lost in the following round to former world number five Daniela Hantuchová.


Riske reached the quarter-finals at the 2014 Hobart International, beating Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Casey Dellacqua. In the 2014 Australian Open, Riske upset #23 seed Elena Vesnina, and made it to the third round before losing to #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 Swiss Belinda Bencic in a well fought match, 6–3, 6–4. After the match, Riske said: "It's a huge accomplishment for me to win my first WTA title and I was here [in China] by myself, which made it even more special, just to know that I was able to do it by myself. I hope I can keep up the momentum and try to compete every week as best as I can."[12][13][14]

WTA career finals

Singles: 1 (1 title)

Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Winner 1. October 12, 2014 Tianjin Open, Tianjin, China Hard Belinda Bencic 6–3, 6–4

Other finals

ITF Circuit singles finals: 10 (6–4)

$100,000 tournaments
$75,000 tournaments
$50,000 tournaments
$25,000 tournaments
$10,000 tournaments
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Runner–up 1. June 1, 2009 Hilton Head, United States Hard Alexandra Mueller 1–6, 6–3, 3–6
Winner 1. October 5, 2009 Troy, United States Hard Christina McHale 6–4, 2–6, 7–5
Runner–up 2. September 20, 2010 Saguenay, Canada Hard Rebecca Marino 4–6, 7–6(4), 6–7(5)
Winner 2. October 4, 2010 Barnstaple, Great Britain Hard Johanna Larsson 6–2, 6–0
Winner 3. October 11, 2010 Joué-lès-Tours, France Hard Vesna Manasieva 5–7, 6–4, 6–1
Winner 4. October 18, 2010 Saint Raphaël, France Hard Urszula Radwańska 6–4, 6–2
Runner–up 3. May 8, 2011 Indian Harbour Beach, United States Clay Melinda Czink 6–4, 1–6, 4–6
Winner 5. October 16, 2011 Joué-lès-Tours, France Hard Akgul Amanmuradova 2–6, 6–2, 7–5
Winner 6. November 6, 2011 Nantes, France Hard Iryna Brémond 6–1, 6–4
Runner–up 4. July 21, 2013 Portland, United States Hard Kurumi Nara 3–6 6–3 3–6

ITF Circuit doubles finals: 4 (1–3)

$100,000 tournaments
$75,000 tournaments
$50,000 tournaments
$25,000 tournaments
$10,000 tournaments
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
Winner 1. June 1, 2009 Hilton Head, United States Hard Jacqueline Cako Natalie Pluskota
Caitlin Whoriskey
6–3, 3–6, 10–6
Runner–up 1. July 20, 2009 Lexington, United States Hard Jacqueline Cako Chang Kai-chen
Tetiana Luzhanska
3–6, 2–6
Runner–up 2. February 13, 2011 Midland, United States Hard Irina Falconi Jamie Hampton
Anna Tatishvili
Runner–up 3. April 24, 2011 Dothan, United States Clay Heidi El Tabakh Valeria Solovieva
Lenka Wienerová
3–6, 4–6

Singles performance timeline

Tournament 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 W–L
Grand Slam Tournaments
Australian Open A A A A 1R 1R Q3 3R 2–3
French Open A A A Q1 A Q1 Q1 2R 1–1
Wimbledon A A A 1R 1R Q2 3R 3R 4–4
US Open Q2 A Q1 Q1 1R Q1 4R 1R 3–3
Win–Loss 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–1 0–3 0–1 5–2 5–4 10–11

Doubles performance timeline

Tournament 2011 2012 2013 2014 W–L
Grand Slam Tournaments
Australian Open 3R 2–1
French Open 3R 2–1
Wimbledon 2R 1–1
US Open 1R 2R 1–2
Win–Loss 0–1 0–0 1–1 5–3 6–5


  1. ^ a b "Local Girl at US Open". Peters Township Magazine. Retrieved 2010-10-06. 
  2. ^ a b "Alison Riske interview". Retrieved 2010-10-06. 
  3. ^ a b c "Getting To Know... Alison Riske". Sony Ericsson WTA Tour. Archived from the original on 24 June 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-22. 
  4. ^ "Sarah Riske". Sony Ericsson WTA Tour. Retrieved 2010-10-06. 
  5. ^ a b Adamski, Chris (2008-11-23). "Washington Sunday: Peters' Riske chooses Vanderbilt". Pittsburgh Post Gazette. Retrieved 2010-10-06. 
  6. ^ a b "Riske Signs NLI with Vanderbilt". Vanderbilt Athletics. Retrieved 2009-12-26. 
  7. ^ "Peters Township's tennis star weighing future options". Pittsburgh Live. Retrieved 2010-10-06. 
  8. ^ Brink, Bill (2010-06-16). "Peters Township's Riske ready to tackle Wimbledon". Pittsburgh Post Gazette. Retrieved 2010-10-22. 
  9. ^ a b "Alison Riske". Women's Tennis Association(WTA). Retrieved 2009-12-26. 
  10. ^ Adamski, Chris (2009-09-03). "Turning pro is a Riske business". Pittsburgh Post Gazette. Retrieved 2009-12-26. 
  11. ^ 2013 US Open – Young Americans Alison Riske and Christina McHale showcase talent at US Open, ESPN, 31 August 2013
  12. ^ "Alison Riske wins 1st WTA title". ESPN Tennis. October 12, 2014. Retrieved October 19, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Tianjin Open: Alison Riske beats Belinda Bencic to win maiden WTA title in China". Sky Sports. October 12, 2014. Retrieved October 19, 2014. 
  14. ^ "Alison Riske wins her first WTA title by denying Belinda Bencic in Tianjin". Tennis World. October 12, 2014. Retrieved October 19, 2014. 

External links

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