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Daria Kasatkina, on ice: WTA Finals debutante compares skating skills with girlfriend Zabiiako
Kasatkina has gotten private figure skating lessons but is yet to get the former Olympian on the tennis court to complete the skills exchange.
Published Oct 29, 2022
WATCH: Kasatkina came out earlier this summer, later revealing her relationship with former Olympic figure skater Natalia Zabiiako.
FORT WORTH—Daria Kasatkina and former Olympic figure skater Natalia Zabiiako have become one of sport’s hottest power couples, but the WTA Finals debutante has admittedly struggled to translate her tennis skills onto the ice.
“I am zero figure skater,” Kasatkina joked during Media Day on Saturday. “I mean, I like to skate, but she has to always carry me or else I will fall. I'm trying hard to learn how to do it, but I just cannot.
“Or maybe she's teaching me bad, so she always has to carry me, you know,” she added with a conspiratorial note.
“I'm enjoying this sport, honestly. It's nice. I enjoy a lot watching her skating. I start to watch more figure skating in general. It's very beautiful sport.”
Zabiiako accompanied Kasatkina to her girlfriend’s first WTA Finals—the world No. 8 narrowly missed qualifying in 2018, serving as an alternate in Singapore—but while the two made a splash in matching sunglasses on the purple carpet, they’ve yet to face off on the tennis court, giving Kasatkina an unexpected edge in their romantic rivalry.
“I will have to figure this mistake for sure. She was trying. We will see. Maybe I will be better skater just because I was practicing a bit more!”
Kasatkina will play her first WTA Finals match on Tuesday against world No. 1 Iga Swiatek in a rematch of their 2022 Roland Garros semifinal.
Might those skating skills translate into fancier footwork?
“I wish to have this speed and this timing and reading the direction of the ball," she said, shouting out Carlos Alcaraz and Félix Auger-Alissime, “because sometimes, for me, it's difficult.”