World No.8 doubles player Lyudmyla Kichenok shared engagement news on Instagram by showing her new ring and tagging Stas Khmarsky, the coach of Jelena Ostapenko.
“A day to remember,” the 30-year-old Kichenok wrote in an Instagram story as she proudly presented her engagement ring. A red heart emoji and a tag that leads to Khmarsky’s profile confirm that this is an official love story announcement. Moreover, her fiancé shared the post on his Instagram profile.
In 2022, Kichenok and Ostapenko played a full season as a doubles team, enriching their careers with two semifinal runs at Grand Slams and two WTA doubles titles (Birmingham and Cincinnati).
Thanks to invaluable support and complete understanding of Ostapenko, Kichenok experienced the best tennis season of her career in 2022, despite the war raging in her home country of Ukraine. “Jelena did all she could to make me feel OK,” Kichenok told Ukrainian outlet Suspilne in July last year. “I don’t need to explain it to her, she understands what’s going on very well.”
Kichenok’s future husband is also Ukrainian. They attended Ostapenko’s 25th birthday party together in Latvia last June and found it hard to return to Ukraine. As Ostapenko said, they enjoyed the city of Riga and felt somewhat at home there: “Most of the people in Ukraine speak Russian also and a lot of people in Latvia, like 50 per cent of people, speak Russian. So maybe they feel a little bit better than in other cities where nobody really speaks it.”
For more stories about the relationships of tennis stars, visit our WTA Players and their Love Partners page.