Diyas at the 2018 French Open
|Born||18 October 1993|
|Height||1.72 m (5 ft 8 in)|
|Plays||Right-handed (two-handed backhand)|
|Career record||311-219 (58.7%)|
|Highest ranking||No. 31 (12 January 2015)|
|Current ranking||No. 79 (2 November 2020)|
|Grand Slam Singles results|
|Australian Open||3R (2014, 2015, 2020)|
|French Open||2R (2015, 2016, 2018, 2019)|
|Wimbledon||4R (2014, 2015)|
|US Open||3R (2014)|
|Career record||26-39 (40.0%)|
|Highest ranking||No. 89 (8 June 2015)|
|Current ranking||No. 468 (2 November 2020)|
|Grand Slam Doubles results|
|Australian Open||2R (2015, 2018)|
|French Open||2R (2015)|
|US Open||QF (2014)|
|Fed Cup/Billie Jean King Cup||18-8 (69.2%)|
|Last updated on: 7 November 2020.|
Zarina Diyas (Kazakh: ? ; Russian: ? ; born 18 October 1993) is a Kazakhstani professional tennis player. She has a career-high Women's Tennis Association (WTA) ranking of No. 31 in the world. She is one of the few Kazakhstani tennis players who was born in Kazakhstan. Diyas has won one WTA singles title, the 2017 Japan Women's Open, as well as nine singles titles on the ITF Women's Circuit.
Diyas mostly played on the ITF Circuit until 2014 when she had a big breakthrough. During that year, she started outside the top 150, before progressing into the top 40 by September. This helped her enter tournaments on the WTA Tour more consistently, however, at some points she later returned to tournaments on the ITF Circuit when her ranking dropped. She is one of most successful female tennis players from Kazakhstan, along with Elena Rybakina and Yulia Putintseva.
She became part of Kazakhstan Fed Cup Team in 2011 and is tied for her country's most singles wins with Yaroslava Shvedova, albeit but with a much better winning percentage. During her childhood, Diyas spent many years in the Czech Republic. She had a chance to acquire Czech citizenship, but decided against it in order to keep playing for Kazakhstan.
Diyas was born on 18 October 1993 in Almaty. Her mother is Aida Aubelova, and she has a sister named Alisa. Despite being born in Kazakhstan, Diyas moved to the Czech Republic with her mother and sister when she was five years old. Her mother introduced her to tennis at age six. Around 2010 she played as a member of a tennis club in Prague. She lived in the Czech Republic until she was 12 years old before moving to Guangzhou, China for much of her tennis training. She later started studying psychology at university remotely.
Diyas reached a career-high ranking of No. 17 as a junior. She made her debut on the ITF Junior Circuit in January 2007 at the age of 13. In July of the same year, she won a low-level Grade 4 title at the Safina Cup, defeating Petra Krejsová in the final. That tournament also was her doubles debut, where she lost in the second round alongside Yuliana Umanets. She then continued to have good performances, reaching one semifinal and one final by the end of the year. The next year, she started with a strong result, winning the Grade 1 tournament Czech International Junior Indoor Championships, at her first participation of the year. In March 2008, she won her first doubles title at Grade 2 level Luxembourg Indoor Junior Open, partnering with Ksenia Lykina.
In June 2008, she made her debut at the French Open, recording her first Grand Slam match win over Irina-Camelia Begu before she was defeated by Ksenia Lykina in the second round. She also made her doubles Grand Slam tournament debut there, losing in the first round. She then reached only the second round at Wimbledon. On her debut at the 2008 US Open and the 2009 Australian Open, she was eliminated in the first round. In June 2009, she played the French Open, her last junior tournament in both singles and doubles, where she reached the third round in singles, and lost in the first round in doubles.
Diyas began playing on the ITF Women's Circuit in 2007 at the age of 14. Her first attempt to play in a main draw of a professional tournament was at a $100K event in Bratislava, where she lost in the first round of qualifying. In April 2008, she received a wildcard for playing in qualification at the Prague Open, but failed to qualify after a first round loss to Klaudia Jans-Ignacik. In November 2008, on her ITF debut at the $25K event in Astana, Diyas won the title.
At her first two appearances in 2009, she reached a quarterfinal before she won another ITF title at $25K event in Stuttgart-Vaihingen. She then made her WTA singles debut at the 2009 Prague Open as wildcard player, where she also marked her first win and first quarterfinal. She defeated qualifier Kristina Mladenovic and seed No. 6 Petra Kvitová, but later was eliminated by seed No. 3 Iveta Bene?ová. The year of 2009 was also important for Diyas, as it was the year when she made her first appearances at the Grand Slam tournaments in qualification at the 2009 US Open. There she missed her chance to get to the main draw, losing to Chang Kai-chen in the first round of qualification.
In 2010, she continued to rise up the rankings, debuting in the top 200 in July. Following mixed results for the first half of the year, she reached the final at the $25K event in Rome, losing to Patricia Mayr-Achleitner. In October 2010, she left her own mark at the Premier-level Kremlin Cup in Moscow. She qualified into the main draw and defeated world No. 49, Gisela Dulko, in the first round, and then achieved the biggest win of her career by defeating top seed and world No. 7, Jelena Jankovi?, in the second round. However, she lost easily to Maria Kirilenko in the quarterfinal match.
During 2011, Diyas did not progress so much, having mostly modest results. Her most significant result was a final at the $25K event in Kunming, where she lost to Iryna Brémond. She then reached the semifinals at the $50K event in Wenshan but did not reach another quarterfinal for the rest of the year. On the WTA Tour, she won only one match, defeating Sun Shengnan in the first round of the Guangzhou Open, but lost in the next match to Petra Marti?.
In late 2011, Diyas underwent shoulder surgery and did not play tennis for the next seven months, which caused her to fall in the rankings, dropping outside the top 300. She made her return on the ITF Tour at the Kangaroo Cup, where she failed to qualify for the main draw. In June 2012, she won her third ITF title at the $25K event in Bukhara, not dropping a set the whole tournament. Later that year, she reached the final of a $25K event in Taipei, where she lost to Zheng Saisai. The next week, she participated in a new WTA 125K event, also in Taipei. She drew top seed Peng Shuai and defeated the world No. 40 in straight sets. She followed this up with a lopsided win over Varatchaya Wongteanchai, losing just one game. She then lost in the quarterfinals to Kurumi Nara, which would mark her last quarterfinal of the season.
Diyas started 2013 season playing mostly in qualification for WTA tournaments. This season was successful for Diyas; she began the year ranked world No. 264 and finished more than 100 spots higher. In February, she recorded a first win on the WTA Tour in 2013, winning over Kristýna Plí?ková in the first round of the Malaysian Open. In the second round she was eliminated by Ashleigh Barty. She then returned to the ITF Tour, mostly making modest results. Her only ITF title of the year, came in October at the $25K event in Makinohara, where she defeated rising Swiss junior and future top 10 player Belinda Bencic to clinch victory. She then advanced to another ITF final at the Ceasar & Imperial Cup in Taipei, but lost to Paula Kania in straight sets.
The 2014 season was Diyas' breakthrough year. She made her season debut at the $25K event in Hong Kong, reaching the final where she lost to Elizaveta Kulichkova. She then entered Australian Open qualifying, registering a close three-set win over Aleksandra Kruni? in the first round. She then came from a set down to defeat Andreea Mitu to get to the final stage of qualification, where she beat Canadian Stéphanie Dubois. This resulted in her first Grand Slam main-draw entry. In the first round of the main draw, she proceeded to beat fellow qualifier Kate?ina Siniaková. In the second round, she breezed past world No. 52, Marina Erakovic, to book her place in the third round. In the third round, Diyas went down to world No. 11, Simona Halep, in straight sets. Nevertheless, her two early round wins helped boost her ranking to a then-career-high No. 112. Following the Australian Open, Diyas lost qualifying matches at the Pattaya Open and the Qatar Open. She bounced back quickly though, as she then easily won a $50K event in Quanzhou.
She then traveled to the United States to compete at the Miami Open, qualifying for the main draw and getting past Alexandra Cadan?u before losing to Sloane Stephens in the second round. Although she failed to qualify for the Charleston Open, she played at the Malaysian Open and advanced to the quarterfinals - her first WTA Tour quarterfinal since the 2010 Kremlin Cup. Diyas then went to Europe but lost early in the first two tournaments contested. At the Internationaux de Strasbourg, a French Open warm-up event, however, she returned to form with a win over world No. 22, Kirsten Flipkens, in the first round. She followed it up by dispatching Ajla Tomljanovi? before having to retire in her quarterfinal match against Christina McHale. Holding a world ranking of No. 86, Diyas was granted a spot in the main draw of the French Open, but got a tough draw and was knocked out by Petra Kvitová in the first round. At the ITF grass-court tournament Aegon Trophy in Nottingham, she advanced to the final but was narrowly beaten by Kristýna Plí?ková. She played one more grass-court event before entering Wimbledon. It was in Birmingham at Aegon Classic, where she was eliminated by CoCo Vandeweghe in the first round. At Wimbledon, she got her first ever win by defeating Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic in a rain-delayed straight-sets match. She followed this up with three-set wins against 15th seed Carla Suárez Navarro and 2010 Wimbledon finalist, Vera Zvonareva, before losing in straight sets to third seed Simona Halep in the fourth round.
In late July, she returned to the United States to compete at the Washington Open, where she reached the second round. She then made another second round, losing there to Lucie ?afá?ová at the Cincinnati Open. Then, in her best result at the US Open to date, the unseeded Diyas advanced to the women's singles third round where she lost in straight sets to 17th seed Ekaterina Makarova of Russia, earning $105,090. There she also played in the doubles event, where alongside Xu Yifan she reached her first Grand Slam quarterfinal. In Asia, she got to the second round at the Wuhan Open and the China Open, losing to Angelique Kerber in both second round matches. After that, Diyas reached her first WTA final at the Japan Women's Open where she lost to Samantha Stosur in straight sets. All of these helped her rise into the top 50, finishing the year as world No. 34.
Diyas came to the Shenzhen Open as part of Australian Open warm-up, where she got to the quarterfinal, losing to Zheng Saisai. Next week, she made another quarterfinal, at the Hobart International, where Alison Riske stopped her from progressing further. Diyas was seeded 31st in singles at the Australian Open. She beat qualifier Urszula Radwa?ska of Poland in three sets in the first round and then unseeded Slovak Anna Karolína Schmiedlová in the second round in three sets, but lost her third round match against No. 2 seed and finalist Maria Sharapova in straight sets. Diyas also played doubles with South African Chanelle Scheepers and they advanced to the second round before losing to the 16th-seeded German team of Julia Görges and Anna-Lena Grönefeld in straight sets.
In February, she traveled to Asia, playing at first in the Thailand Open in Pattaya, but lost at the beginning of the tournament. At the Dubai Tennis Championships, a Premier 5 tournament, she won against two German players, Annika Beck and Andrea Petkovic, before she lost to Ekaterina Makarova in the next round. At the Qatar Open, she defeated Ons Jabeur in the first round, but then Petkovic avenged her early Dubai exit by beating Diyas. At the Indian Wells Open, she got a bye in the first round for being seed No. 28. In the next round she beat Donna Veki?, before she lost to Serena Williams in the third round. At the Miami Open she also got a bye, but lost in the second round to CiCi Bellis.
The clay season didn't start well for Diyas, as she lost in first round at the Family Circle Cup. At the Premier-level Stuttgart Open, she notched the WTA's second double-bagel of the season against Sabine Lisicki in the first round, but did not make it to the quarterfinal, losing to Sara Errani. At the Madrid Open, she lost at the beginning of the tournament to Carla Suárez Navarro. At the Italian Open, she beat Tsvetana Pironkova before she lost to seed No. 6 Eugenie Bouchard. At the French Open, Diyas was seeded 32nd. She defeated qualifier Dinah Pfizenmaier in straight sets but eventually lost to Alison Van Uytvanck in the second round.
Prior to Wimbledon, Diyas was defeated by lower-ranked players in two warm-up tournaments, losing to 129th-ranked Sachia Vickery at the Nottingham Open and to 146th-ranked Johanna Konta at the Eastbourne International. Diyas, however, reached the round of 16 at Birmingham, by defeating Kateryna Bondarenko in straight sets and through the withdrawal of Victoria Azarenka. Diyas subsequently lost to 12th-ranked Czech Karolína Plí?ková. Despite the slow start on grass that left her unseeded at the Wimbledon Championships, Diyas managed to advance to the fourth round for the second consecutive year. Diyas beat 24th seed Flavia Pennetta, qualifier Aliaksandra Sasnovich and 14th seed Andrea Petkovic. However, her stealthy run at Wimbledon was ended by the fourth seed Maria Sharapova.
Her hardcourt season, however, did not go as well as her performance on grass. Diyas failed to win in all her pre-US Open tournaments. At the Washington Open, Diyas had to retire against Lauren Davis after trailing a set and 2-1 down. She lost to lucky loser Julia Görges at the Canadian Open, to Venus Williams at the Cincinnati Open and to Irina-Camelia Begu at the Connecticut Open - all in the first round. At the first round of the US Open, Diyas was defeated by Polona Hercog. This meant that she failed to repeat her third-round appearance from the previous year.
By the end of the year, she was still not doing well. At the Japan Women's Open she defeated Kiki Bertens in the first round, her last win of the 2015 season. In the second round she lost to Magda Linette. In her next three tournaments, she lost in the first round to Madison Brengle at the Pan Pacific Open, to Irina-Camelia Begu at the Wuhan Open and to Monica Puig at the China Open. Diyas finished the year as world No. 52.
Diyas started the year playing at the Shenzhen Open, where she recorded her first win of the season against qualifier Zhang Kailin. In the second round, she was eliminated by Kate?ina Siniaková. In her next two tournaments, she was lost in the first round, at the Hobart International to Camila Giorgi and at the Australian Open to Madison Keys. At the Qatar Open she was eliminated by Je?ena Ostapenko.
In March, she traveled to the United States, first to play in the Indian Wells Open, where she beat Jamie Loeb in the first round, but could not beat Victoria Azarenka in the next round. At the Miami Open, she defeated Olga Govortsova and Daria Gavrilova and went one round further, where Serena Williams eliminated her from the tournament. On clay, she reached two second rounds, at the Internationaux de Strasbourg losing to Alla Kudryavtseva and then at the French Open losing to Simona Halep.
Diyas suffered a wrist injury in round one of Wimbledon, where she lost to Anna-Lena Friedsam. Later she underwent surgery. She did not play in any tournaments in 2016 after that. As a result, she fell out of the top 100.
Diyas' attempt to return from her injury started with a series of losses. She lost in the opening rounds of her first four tournaments of the season before scoring her first wins at the Blossom Cup in Quanzhou, reaching quarterfinals and losing to Zheng Saisai. She then won her first ITF title since June 2014 in a $25K tournament in Nanning. At the Zhengzhou Open, a WTA 125K tournament, she managed to reach the quarterfinals before losing to the first seed Peng Shuai. At the Kunming Open $100K ITF tournament, she reached the final but lost to Zheng Saisai again. At the Kangaroo Cup in Gifu, she lost in the first round to Luksika Kumkhum. She then lost to another returning player Magdaléna Rybáriková twice, in Fukuoka and Surbiton. Diyas then failed to qualify for the main draw of the French Open as she lost to Bethanie Mattek-Sands after defeating Sachia Vickery and Polona Hercog in the first two qualifying rounds.
Diyas then won a $100K tournament, the Aegon Manchester Trophy, scoring victories against Emily Webley-Smith, Arina Rodionova, Magdalena Fr?ch, Naomi Broady and Aleksandra Kruni? without dropping a set. At Wimbledon, Diyas was given a wildcard to the main draw. She won her first two matches against Han Xinyun and Arina Rodionova. She lost to another returning player, Petra Martic, in the third round.
At the Japan Women's Open, Diyas won all her qualifying matches to reach the main draw. She went on to score victories against several higher-ranked players, namely local favourite Misaki Doi, top 30 player Zhang Shuai, compatriot Yulia Putintseva and defending champion Christina McHale to reach the final. She eventually beat fellow qualifier Miyu Kato to win her first ever WTA title.
Diyas chose Shenzhen Open as her Australian Open warm-up tournament. There she recorded two wins before she lost to Maria Sharapova in the quarterfinal. Diyas was ranked well inside the top 100 on New Year's Day of 2018 at No. 66, and thus was directly accepted into the main draw of a Grand Slam at the Australian Open for the first time since the 2016 Wimbledon Championships. However, she lost in the first round to Sorana Cîrstea in three sets. In March, Diyas reached the fourth round of a WTA Premier Mandatory event at the Miami Open, but had to retire while a set down in her match against Karolína Plí?ková.
In May she reached the quarterfinals of a WTA clay court event for the first time in her career at the Internationaux de Strasbourg, losing in straight sets to eventual champion Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Subsequently, she won her first round match at the French Open, losing in the second round to Naomi Osaka. In her first round match against Samantha Stosur at the Nottingham Open, Diyas suffered a serious knee injury that saw her miss the entire grass season. She returned for the US Open, but lost in the first round to Karolína Plí?ková. Diyas was also unsuccessful in defending her title at the Japan Women's Open, losing in the quarterfinals to No. 1 seed, Zhang Shuai.
At the start of 2019, Diyas lost in the first round of the Australian Open from Aleksandra Kruni?. First-round losses followed at the Dubai Tennis Championships and Indian Wells Open, and then the failure to qualify for the Miami Open with the subsequent loss of ranking points saw her once again drop out of the top 100. However, in May, Diyas won the eighth career ITF singles title at the Kangaroo Cup, which was enough to edge her back into the top 100.
Diyas started the 2020 season at the Shenzhen Open, losing in the quarterfinals to Garbiñe Muguruza. After that, she played at the Australian Open, reaching the third round where she played against No. 10, Kiki Bertens, but failed to reach the fourth round, missing a chance to make her best result at that tournament. At the Cincinnati Open, she failed to qualify to the main draw. At the US Open, she lost in first round to Bernarda Pera. Just like in her previous Premier 5 appearance, she failed to qualify for main draw at the Italian Open. At her last event of 2020, she lost at the French Open in the first round to Ons Jabeur.
Diyas made her senior Billie Jean King Cup debut for Kazakhstan in 2009, representing the team from 2009 to 2011, and again from 2015 through 2019, with absence in 2017. This event was known as the Fed Cup up until 2020. Diyas has played in 19 ties, compiling an overall record of 18-8 split between 14-5 in singles and 4-3 in doubles. When Diyas debuted for Kazakhstan, they were in Asia/Oceania Zone Group II. In order to be promoted to the Group I for 2010 Fed Cup, Kazakhstan needed to win their round-robin group, which also consisted of Iran, Singapore and Hong Kong. They first played against Singapore, winning with a 3-0 score. After that, with the same score, they defeated Iran, when Diyas debuted, playing in doubles alongside Galina Voskoboeva and also winning that match with a double bagel. Kazakhstan were promoted to Zone Group I for 2010 after winning all matches against Singapore, Iran and Hong Kong. The following year, they came second in a group where they beat Thailand and Uzbekistan both by a 2-1 score, but lost to Chinese Taipei.  That sent them to the play-off, where they defeated South Korea. Again, Diyas only played in doubles. Although she lost that match while partnering with Sesil Karatantcheva, Kazakhstan won another two singles matches and stayed in Group I for 2011. Being in Group I in 2011, Kazakhstan had another chance to advance out of the Zone Group and play in the World Group II play-off, but they failed, coming second in their round-robin group. In a play-off of the Zone Group, they lost to Thailand and stayed in Group I for 2012.
Diyas didn't play any match for Kazakhstan for the next three years from 2012-2014. During that time, Kazakhstan remained in Zone Group I. They had a chance to be promoted to World Group II in 2014, but lost the World Group II play-off in 2013 to France. On her return in 2015, Diyas all of her three singles matches. That was enough for Kazakhstan to win their round-robin group, however, later they lost to Japan in the play-off, and missing another chance to get to the World Group II play-off. The next year, Diyas only played singles matches, and was victorious in both of them, but it wasn't enough for Kazakhstan to win their round-robin group. Later they played against India for 5th place in Zone Group I, but didn't win the tie. After one year of absence, Diyas not only returned to play at Fed Cup, but also played her first doubles match there since her debut in 2009. Kazakhstan was the winner of their round-robin group, where Diyas won all her five matches, three in singles and two in doubles. Nonetheless, in the play-off of Zone Group, they lost against Japan and missed their chance to play in the World Group II play-off to potentially get to the World Group II in 2019.
The 2019 Fed Cup was important for Diyas, being the first year when Kazakhstan advanced out of the Zone Group with Diyas as part of the team. In the World Group II play-off, Kazakhstan faced Great Britain. Diyas lost both of her singles matches, against Johanna Konta and Katie Boulter, despite winning the first set in both of matches. In 2020, format of the Fed Cup changed, allowing Kazakhstan to be a part of the 2020 Fed Cup Qualifying Round. Kazakhstan played against Belgium for their place in the Finals round, but lost 1-3. Diyas had two singles match losses against Kirsten Flipkens and Elise Mertens. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 Fed Cup was forced to be split into two years, so that the 2020 Fed Cup Finals round was postponed to 2021, when it was first renamed as the Billie Jean King Cup. Kazakhstan will play against Argentina in the Billie Jean King Cup Play-offs in 2021, where the winner of the tie will advance to the 2022 Billie Jean King Cup Qualifying Round.
Diyas is primarily an aggressive baseliner whose game is centered around powerful and accurate groundstrokes. Her forehand, which generates a considerable amount of pace, is often used to move her opponents around the court and out of position, which therefore allows her to dominate and win points from or around the back of the court. Her serve, while not necessarily a weapon in her arsenal, is quite effective when placed properly and she employs a tactic of a delayed service motion, which often prevents her opponents from appropriately timing a return. While not a great mover on court, she is able to partly compensate for that with her tenacious fighting qualities.
As a junior, Diyas was coached by Jaroslav Jandus when she was seventeen years old. After her shoulder surgery that she underwent in late 2011, she started a collaboration with a new coach Alan Ma in Guangzhou. In 2018, she split with Ma and started a collaboration with two Italians, Roberto Antonini as her coach and Carlo Bilardo as her athletic trainer.
She has named Justine Henin, Martina Hingis, and Serena Williams as her tennis idols and also enjoys playing chess, listening to music, and watching movies as some of her favorite hobbies. Diyas is fluent in Russian, Czech, and English. In an interview with Tennis Prose, Diyas stated that her favourite tournament is Wimbledon, being in love with its tradition and history.
In 2019, she won the Fed Cup Heart Award for the Asia/Oceania Zone Group I. She is the third player from Kazakhstan to win that award, and they have combined for four such awards in total. In 2014, she was nominated for the award of Newcomer of the Year, but lost to Belinda Bencic.
|Australian Open||A||2R||1R||A||2R||2R||2R||0 / 5||4-5||44%|
|French Open||A||2R||A||A||1R||A||1R||0 / 3||1-3||25%|
|Wimbledon||2R||1R||A||A||A||A||NH||0 / 2||1-2||33%|
|US Open||QF||1R||A||A||1R||A||A||0 / 3||3-3||50%|
|Win-Loss||4-2||2-4||0-1||0-0||1-3||1-1||1-2||0 / 13||9-13||41%|