Elena Dementieva was one of the new breeds of beautiful Russian tennis players with blonde hair and blue eyes and she has often been compared to former Champion now turned model Anna Kournikova.
|Turned Pro:||Aug. 25 1998|
She hates being in the spotlight and tries to keep her personal life private but she did agree to star in a pop video in 2006. She had just returned from playing three grueling matches in Paris when she led Russia to victory over France in the Federation Cup and was at home in her Moscow apartment when she received a phone call. It was from Igo Nikolaev, Russia’s biggest pop star who is a big tennis fan. He played her his new song and asked her what she thought. When she told him she liked it he said, “Good because you are starring in the video.”
A week later she was in St Petersburg for the filming. She had to wake up in bed, her blonde hair falling over her bare shoulders as Nikolaev sang, “You are holding my heart in your hands, and you don’t even know. You don’t even know how beautiful you are.” She then had to saunter around in skimpy pajamas. Another scene had her pouting behind the wheel of a silver Mercedes McLaren and a third leaning over the singer’s piano. Asked why she agreed to do it she said, “I was so tired that the idea of dressing up in pretty clothes and driving fast cars seemed fun, like a vacation.”
Olympic medallist Dementieva has been accused of being a “mother’s girl” as she always takes her mother Vera with her wherever she goes. She has been asked why she does not travel with a coach instead to which she replies her mother is all she needs. But she still lives her own life, her parents live in a separate apartment block next to hers and she has a long-term boyfriend, hockey player Maxim Afinogenov. He plays right wing for the Buffalo Sabres and the couple has been dating for several years.
When she is not competing a typical day for her is to get up at 7 am and do her breathing and stretching exercises to wake her body up. Then it is breakfast, a bowl of porridge with raisins, figs and nuts, and green tea. Her whole day is geared to training so she goes from her home in the center of Moscow, a five-minute drive from Red Square, to the Central Red Army Club where she has been a member since she was 11.
Although it is not far from her home it can take an hour to get there because of traffic. Dementieva has a BMW but her mother often takes her. She practices until lunchtime when she takes a two-hour break and returns home.
She likes to cook her food and she will have chicken steamed or baked in the oven for protein, pasta, and plenty of green salad. If there is time she will watch television, her favorite show is “Getting Married,” about people meeting each other.
Then it is back to training until 7 or 8 pm, or sometimes 9 or 10 pm. She goes home and cooks something like grilled beef with steamed rice and vegetables which she buys at an organic store.
If she is going out for the evening she likes dressing up in her favorite designer (Stella McCartney)’s clothes. She also likes Jimmy Choo shoes and Balenciaga handbags and says she has a lot of both.
Elena Dementieva is a player with true talent who can make quick and accurate shot selections when called upon.