Kiki Bertens is a Dutch professional tennis player who is regarded as a clay-court specialist and has reached the Top 5 in the WTA rankings, becoming the highest ranked Dutch female player ever.
Name: Kiki Bertens
Born: December 10, 1991
Turned Pro: 2009
Kiki Bertens was born in Wateringen, Netherlands and started playing tennis at the age of six. She began playing at ATV Berkenrode, a tennis club where her aunt and uncle played. Her ability was quickly recognized and she began to receive coaching when she was seven. She did not play on the ITF Junior Circuit except for a single appearance at the 2007 Junior Fed Cup.
Bertens participated on the ITF Circuit early in her career, winning four singles titles between 2009 and 2011. She made her WTA main draw debut at at ‘s-Hertogenbosch in 2011, losing in the first round. The following year, she would play at the 2012 Morocco Open, upsetting fifth seed Simona Halep en route to her first WTA final. She would defeat Laura Pous Tio to win her maiden WTA title. As a result, she would make her Top 100 debut, rising to No.92. She would suffer early round losses at the French Open, Wimbledon and the US Open. After a quarterfinal appearance at Seoul, she would end the 2012 season with a first round loss at the Luxembourg Open.
Bertens would reach the semifinals of the 2013 Open GDF Suez, losing to Sara Errani. She would make her Top 50 debut that season, following some quarterfinal appearances during the season. The next year, she advanced to the fourth round of the 2014 French Open, losing to Andrea Petkovic. She would also make the quarterfinals at Luxembourg, and finish the season in the Top 100. Bertens would have an underwhelming 2015 season, highlighted by a semifinal showing at ‘s-Hertogenbosch. This would cause her to change coaches, although she did win two WTA doubles titles.
Bertens would win her second career WTA title at the 2016 Nuremberg Cup, defeating Mariana Duque Mariño in the final. She also won the doubles title, teaming with Johanna Larsson. At the 2016 French Open, Bertens would reach her first Grand Slam semifinal. She upset World No.3 Angelique Kerber in the first round, before eventually losing to top seed Serena Williams. This performance saw her break into the Top 30 for the first time in her career. She would lose in the third round at Wimbledon, before making the final at Gstaad (l. to Viktorija Golubic). Her ranking would rise to No.21, and she would make the semifinals at the Luxembourg Open (l. to Niculescu). Bertens ended her season at the WTA Elite Trophy, but would lose both her matches.
During the 2017 season, Bertens would reach the semifinals of the Italian Open (l. to Halep). She successfully defended her Nuremberg title, but would suffer early round losses at Roland Garros and Wimbledon. Bertens would rebound with a title win at Gstaad, and also claim the doubles title alongside Johanna Larsson.
After a disappointing US Open series, Bertens would reach the quarterfinals of the Luxembourg Open (l. to Witthoft). She would then compete in the doubles event of the year-ending WTA Finals. Teaming with Johanna Larsson, the duo would reach the final. However, they fell to the team of Tímea Babos and Andrea Sestini Hlaváčková. Bertens would end the year ranked No.31 in singles, but achieve a career-high of No. 19 in doubles.
Bertens won her first WTA Premier title at the 2018 Charleston Open, defeating Julia Goerges in the final. She would follow this with her first WTA Premier Mandatory final at the Madrid Open, but lose to Petra Kvitova. She had her best Wimbledon performance, defeating ninth seed Venus Williams and seventh seed Karolina Pliskova. However, she would lose to Goerges in the quarterfinal.
Bertens would make the quarterfinals at the 2018 Canadian Open, before winning the biggest title of her career at Cincinnati. She defeated Ajla Tomljanovic in the final of the Korea Open to win her second hardcourt title. This enabled her to qualify for the WTA Finals, where she would lose in the semifinals to eventual winner Elina Svitolina. She would end the season at a career-high of No.9, and win the WTA’s Most Improved Player of the Year for 2018.
During the 2019 season, Bertens would win the St. Petersburg Open title, defeating Donna Vekic in the final. She would make fourth round appearances at Indian Wells and Miami, before winning her first Premier Mandatory title at the Madrid Open. She would defeat Kvitova, former US Open champion Sloane Stephens and World No.3 Simona Halep en route to the title. As a result, she reached a new career-high of World No.4.
The Dutchwoman would have poor showings at the remaining Majors. However, she finished runner-up at three events; ‘s-Hertogenbosch (l. to Riske), Palermo (l. to Teichmann) and Zhuhai (l. to Sabalenka). This saw her finish the year as World No.9, allowing her to participate at the WTA Finals as an alternate. She would post a 1-1 record and fail to reach the knockout stage.
Bertens would win the 2020 St. Petersburg Open, her 10th career title. She would also team with World No.1 Ashleigh Barty to finish runner-up at the 2020 Brisbane International.
Bertens married her physiotherapist Remko de Rijke in November 2019. She has an older sister Joyce, who helps manage her finances. Her tennis idol growing up was Kim Clijsters and her favorite tournaments are the Grand Slams.