Jelena Ostapenko confesses the true reason she wants to win the Linz trophy

Ostapenko, the top seed in the Upper Austria Ladies Linz WTA event, advances into the semifinal round

Alexander Scheuber/GettyImages
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Jelena Ostapenko is the gift that keeps giving on the WTA Tour. She has a unique personality that is equal parts fun and feisty depending on the circumstance. It is a testament to how deep the WTA talent pool is that Ostapenko is not talked about more often. She is a Grand Slam singles champion (2017 French Open) and an accomplished doubles player finishing as a finalist in ladies' doubles at the 2024 Australian Open and in mixed doubles at the 2019 Wimbledon Championships.

She is the top seed at the WTA 500 Upper Austria Ladies Linz event in Linz, Austria this week. It has not been smooth sailing for her. Ostapenko saved a match point and was pushed to three sets by Clara Tauson in her Round of 16 match.

Ostapenko is a competitor and wants to win, but she has a particular reason for wanting the Linz trophy. She admits that she likes shiny things, and the Linz one has plenty of bling.

Ostapenko has a collection of shiny trophies, but the Linz one is unique

There is a good reason why she wants this Linz trophy. To celebrate the tournament being elevated to a WTA 500 this year, the trophy has been redesigned. It is now two feet high, weighs nearly eight pounds, and contains a golden tennis ball with 8,100 hand-set Swarovski crystals.

This unbelievable piece of beauty and workmanship that will go to the champion in Linz is serving notice to the other WTA tournaments that it is time to up their trophy game. As for Ostapenko's game, it is as good as ever. She is the World No. 12 in singles and World No. 17 in doubles. She is chasing her career-high rankings of 5 and 7 in singles and doubles respectively.

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