Eastern Europe has some of the hottest female athletes around. Not only do these sexy women kick ass in sports like tennis, gymnastics, and golf, but they make their sport look good. Here are some of the hottest athletes to come out of Russia and the Ukraine.
Maria Kirilenko, Tennis
Russian tennis sensation Maria Kirilenko was born in Moscow and began playing tennis at the age of 5. After years of training under Honored Master of sports Elena Brioukhovets, Kirilenko became a top contender in her age group and went on to win the US Open junior tournament in 2002, one of the youngest players to do so.
Maria’s professional accomplishments include 17 WTA titles (doubles and singles), 3 ITF titles (singles), two Grand Slam singles quarterfinals, and a bronze medal in the 2012 Olympic Games. She also played in the 2010 Australian Open and Wimbledon 2012.
A natural beauty as well as an accomplished athlete, Maria appeared in the 2009 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition and is the face of Adidas by Stella McCartney. It’s easy to see why Maria Kirilenko has so many devoted fans.
Maria Sharapova, Tennis
Hot tennis star Maria Sharapova was born in Russia but has lived in the United States since she was seven years old. In 1994, Maria’s father brought her to America to study at the prestigious Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy, a risky move that paid off big.
Affectionately nicknamed the “Siberian Siren,” Maria won her first tournament in 2001, joined the WTA in 2003, and defeated Serena Williams in the 2004 Wimbledon final, all before the age of 18. Maria’s other career accomplishments include three additional Grand Slam Singles wins, 23 WTA singles titles, and a silver medal at the 2012 Olympic Games. In 2006, Forbes named Sharapova the highest-paid female athlete in the world, with most of her earnings coming from endorsements.
The stunning Sharapova has been featured in numerous publications, including a six-page bikini spread in the 2006 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. Many gents consider Maria Sharapova to be the sexiest tennis players alive. Do you agree?
Anna Kournikova, Tennis
One of the best known tennis players in the world, Anna Kournikova first picked up a racket at age 5 and went on to study at the famed Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy. Though Anna’s career was relatively short lived, she managed to win 2 ITF singles titles and 16 WTA doubles titles, before back injuries forced her to retire at the age of 21. However, Kournikova is famous for far more than her tennis skills.
Sexy Anna has appeared in numerous men’s mags, including FHM, Maxim, and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue. She also guest starred as a celebrity trainer on the twelfth season of The Biggest Loser. The blond beauty is still one of the most frequently searched celebrities on the Web and is widely considered to be one of the hottest athletes of all time. Anna currently lives in Miami Beach, Florida with her boyfriend of over 10 years, Spanish singer Enrique Iglesias.
Vera Zvonareva, Tennis
Hailing from Moscow, Vera Zvonareva is a hot Russian tennis player who has captivated fans for over 12 years.
Vera’s professional highlights include 12 WTA singles titles and 5 doubles titles, a bronze medal at the 2008 Olympic Games, and three Grand Slam Tournament wins. The sexy athlete also reached the finals of the 2008 WTA Tour Championships, the 2010 Wimbledon Championships, and the 2010 US Open. An injury in 2007 set Vera back, but the dedicated athlete is training hard to get back on track.
In 2011, Vera showed off her fabulously fit physique by posing nude for ESPN’s Body Issue, winning even more admirers to her already considerable fan base.
Anna Chakvetadze, Tennis
Anna Chakvetadze is a sizzling Russian tennis player from Moscow. The bilingual beauty first picked up a racket at age eight and eventually reached a career-high professional singles ranking of World No. 5. Chakvetadze’s professional highlights include 8 WTA and 2 ITF singles titles and an appearance in the 2007 US Open semifinals. A fresh-faced beauty as well as a talented athlete, Anna has appeared in FHM as well as many other popular publications.
Ukrainian stunner Alona Bondarenko hails from Kharkiv and has played professional tennis since 1999. The blonde beauty, who is the older sister of tennis star Kateryna Bondarenko, reached a career high ranking of World No. 19 and has 2 WTA singles and 4 WTA doubles titles under her belt. In 2008, Alona won the 2008 Australian Open. Admired for her good looks as well as her tennis skills, Bondarenko has appeared in FHM, Maxim, and Sports Illustrated, among others.
Olga Kharlan, Fencing
Ukrainian fencer Olga Kharlan was a member of the women’s saber team that took gold in the 2008 Summer Olympics, an accomplishment that helped push fencing into the international spotlight. The Mykolaiv native has also won gold at every European Championship since 2009 and has placed at every World Championship in the last three years. Kharlan also won a bronze medal at the 2012 Olympic Games.
After the Olympic win in 2008, Olga and saber team mates Olha Zhovnir and Olena Khomrova posed for a sizzling pictorial in XXL Magazine, a Ukrainian publication similar to America’s Maxim. The unique exposure has helped generate an interest in both women’s fencing and Ukrainian women. Has it piqued your interest?
Yevgeniya Kanayeva, Gymnastics
Hot Russian Yevgeniya Kanayeva is a rhythmic gymnast with a knack for winning big. The Omsk-born beauty is a two-time Olympic medalist who snagged gold at both the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games. In fact, Kanayeva was the only gymnast to score more than 29 points in three routines. Yevgeniya also has 17 World Champion and 13 European Champion titles to her name, in addition to a slew of other honors.
Kanayeva was one of six Olympic medalists to receive an Order For Merit to the Fatherland medal from Russian president Vladimir Putin. After her stunning Olympic victory, the lovely Yevgeniya decided to take a break from training to pursue other interests though many hope she will return to the sport.
Alina Kabaeva, Gymnastics
Russia’s Alina Kabaeva is one of the world’s most successful rhythmic gymnasts with two Olympic medals, 14 world championship medals, and 25 European championship medals under her belt. Alina retired from the sport in 2007, and is now a State Duma deputy in the United Russia party.
Rumor has it Kabaeva is Vladimir Putin’s lover. In 2009, the athletic beauty gave birth to a baby boy who many believe to be Putin’s. One newspaper even reported the two planned to wed after Putin divorced his wife, Ludmila. The divorce never happened, however, and the paper was reportedly shut down for publishing the scandalous story. Kabaeva appeared on the cover of Russian Vogue in 2011, a move that sparked controversy around the world.
Darya Klishina, Long Jumping
Darya Klishina is a stunning long jumper who also works as a model. Born in Russia, Darya took gold at five major field and track events, including the European U23 Championships and the European Indoor Championships. The blonde beauty had hoped to make Russia’s London Olympic team, but unfortunately missed the mark with a fifth place finish at the Russian championships. If long jumping doesn’t work out, there’s always modeling. IMG World represents Darya, and Russian Vogue recently featured her on the cover. We hope to see more of the stunning Darya, be it in on the field or on the glossy pages of a magazine.
Tatyana Lysenko, Hammer Throwing
Russia’s Tatyana Lysenko is a world-renowned hammer thrower. The Bataisk-born beauty won a gold medal at the 2012 Olympic Games, setting a new record in the process. Lysenko also took home gold at the 2011 World Championships and the 2011 Continental Cup. We have a feeling the world will be seeing a lot more of the Tatyana’s throwing power.
Anastasia Luppova, Billiards
A smoking hot pool player from Kazan, Russia, Anastasia Luppova is a two-time European champion in Russian pyramid, not to mention a Master of Sports and the winner of the 2009 Miss Billiards competition. The brunette beauty learned to play pool when she was seven years old after watching her father play billiards at a resort. A pictorial of the Luppova helped bring this pool-playing beauty to the international spotlight.
Maria Verchenova, Golf
At times called the “Maria Sharapova of golf,” Maria Verchenova is a Russian golfer who makes swinging a club look good. As the striking brunette told Gold Punk Magazine:
“I always like to bring something extra special to the golf course, so if I'm wearing sexier, more stylish, stuff like a shorter skirt or a nice tennis-style dress and people notice then great."
In 2007, Maria became the first Russian to join the Ladies European Tour as a full-time member, and she hopes to make golf became a mainstream sport in Eastern Europe. Verchenova recently took a break from golfing to give birth to her first child, but she plans to be back on the course in no time. Maria’s fans anxiously await her return.
Ilona Korstin, Basketball
Russian Ilona Korstin is one of Europe’s most famous basketball players. The Leningrad native is a natural athlete who played a range of sports before finally settling on shooting hoops.
Korstin’s professional accomplishments include bronze medals at the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games. Ilona also briefly played for the WNBA in the U.S. before signing with CSKA Moscow. The statuesque beauty helped her team win the Superleague-Russian Championship three years in a row, the Cup of Russia two times in a row, the World League championship four times, and the Cup of Russia in 2004, 2006, and 2007. Ilona also briefly played for the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury. Who knows what this statuesque beauty will achieve next.
Yelena Isinbayeva, Pole Vaulting
Considered by many to be the greatest female pole-vaulter of all time, Russia’s Yelena Isinbayeva has set 28 world records in the sport and is a two-time Olympic gold medalist. Isinbayeva’s other career greats include six World Champion titles, two European Champion titles, and three Female Athlete of the Year titles, among many other honors.
However, it’s not just Yelena’s skills with the pole that garners her so much admiration. The striking brunette has appeared in a number of magazine spreads and is one of the web’s most searched athletes. It’s not hard to see why.
Irina Kalentieva, Mountain Bike Racing
A cross-country mountain bike racer from Russia, Irina “Ira” Kalentieva makes cycling look good. In fact, the blonde beauty appeared as Ms. December in the 2009 edition of Cycle Passion calendar, setting fans’ hearts racing. Ira’s career highlights include a bronze Olympic medal (2008), two World Champion, and three European Championship titles. The mountain bike racing phenomenon is also a seven-time Russian National Champion.
Stay tuned for hot Russian women athletes or head over to Hot Russian Brides to meet a Russian woman now.