It has been an interesting start to the 2011 season for the “Killer Bee” Bethanie Mattek-Sands
to say the least, with a Hopman Cup title in Perth, Australia with fellow American John Isner, a
finals appearance for singles in Hobart, Tasmania and a quarter finals/semi finals showing in
doubles and mixed doubles at the ‘11 Australian Open. Bethanie followed up that great
performance by making the semi finals of singles and winning the doubles title at the 2011
GDF Suez in Paris, France with her partner Meghann Shaughnessy.
Now known not just for her on/off court fashion, but also her fierce on court ability,
Mattek-Sands is looking to work her way up the ranks in 2011 one match at a time and
show why she truly is a rising star on the WTA Tour with a current ranking of #42 in
singles and #12 in doubles. Thus far in her career Bethanie has accumulated nine
Sony Ericcson WTA Tour Doubles Titles, 5 ITF Women’s Circuit Singles Titles, and
three ITF Women’s Circuit Doubles Titles along with several appearances in
quarters, semis and finals at other WTA events.
Bethanie Mattek-Sands had a rough start to her 2010 campaign due to
a lingering injury from ’08-’09 that would not allow her to play at the level
she is now accustom too. Mattek-Sands saw her Singles ranking fall from
#37 in the beginning of 2009 all the way to #155. Despite having a shaky
start in ’10, Bethanie rebounded throughout the season and was able to claw
her way back up the world rankings to finish off the 2010 season at an impressive
#58 in singles and #17 in doubles. Two contributing factors to her success in ’10
were the amount of matches she had to play because of the need to qualify for
almost every tournament she entered, and the addition of her new coach
Finally half way through the 2010 season Mattek-Sands felt relatively healthy
for the first time in her career and it started to show as she was able to qualify and
win a few rounds week after week and post a 38-18 singles record by the end of her
2010 season and an impressive doubles run that included quarter finals appearances
at the Australian Open and US Open, semi finals of Wimbledon with fellow American
Liezel Huber and a 3rd round appearance at Roland Garros. Bethanie also had a great
regular season doubles showing by having reached a career high ranking of #12 and
made several finals appearances inlcuding Memphis, Birmingham, New Haven, Quebec
City, and Ponte Vedre Beach where she won the title with her then doubles partner Yan,
Zi of China. Bethanie also made several semi final and quarter final doubles appearances
at Indian Wells, San Diego, Rome, and Montreal. As her confidence and comfort level with
her new coach grew, Bethanie was able to finish off her 2010 season with a finals appearance
in both singles and doubles at the Bell Challenge in Quebec City, Quebec and again worked
her way back up to become the third highest ranked American singles player behind Venus
and Serena Williams.
In addition, throughout her 2010 campaign Bethanie was also part of a “Blue Collar” USA
Fedcup team that made a second consecutive run at the title against Italy in November in San Diego, CA. Before she and team USA made it to San Diego, Mattek-Sands made history in the semi final round of the 2010 FedCup against Russia on home soil in Birmingham, AL where she became the first woman to win consecutive live matches in a FedCup tie and move team USA on to yet another final against defending champion Italy. Bethanie along with fellow Americans Melanie Oudin and Liezel Huber have been the tried and true FedCup team for the USA over the past two seasons and will continue to be just that through 2011 and into the 2012 Olympic year.
Looking back over the past three seasons, 2008-2010 had some clear ups and downs but it has all been part of the process that has brought Mattek-Sands back to where she is right now. 2009 was more than a struggle for Bethanie as she started the season in March at the BNP Paribas in Indian Wells, CA. Looking back now she probably would have taken a few more months off and rehabbed her surgically repaired hip even more than she did, but despite a downslide in her singles game, Mattek-Sands tends to find the positives in every situation and had a great season in the doubles alley. Bethanie was able to add three more doubles titles that year having won Charleston, SC, Stuttgart, Germany, and Warsaw, Poland (Kops-Jones). Along with winning two doubles titles together, she and partner Nadia Petrova made the semifinals of Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, semifinals of Stanford, CA, QuarterFinals of US Open and the QuarterFinals of Roland Garros. At that 2009 French Open Mattek-Sands and Petrova defeated the Williams Sisters in a 3hr 18min slugfest in the 3rd Round and were one of only two teams to beat the Williams Sisters in all of 2009. These captivating performances allowed her to climb to a career high #17 in doubles by the end of the 2009 season.
In 2008 Bethanie had some impressive finishes in both singles and doubles having amassed a 36-18 singles record that season. In order to achieve a record like that, Mattek-Sands made the Round of 16 at Wimbledon, Finals of Quebec City, Semi Finals of The Bank of the West in Los Angeles, Semi Finals in Birmingham, England and an ITF semis appearance in Charlottesville, finals appearance in Indian Harbour and a finals Title in Dothan, AL. To accompany these impressive stats in 2008 Mattek-Sands also won a doubles title at Amelia Island, FL and Bogota, Colombia with a semi final appearance at Indian Wells and Los Angeles, and a quarter finals at Wimbledon.
Her 2008 season came to an early end just after her finals appearance in Quebec City as Bethanie was diagnosed with a hip injury that required surgery and several months away from the tour. Just days before she was to undergo hip surgery, Bethanie Mattek became Bethanie Mattek-Sands on November 29, 2008 in Naples, FL at a private beach ceremony where she and Justin Sands were wed amongst family and friends. Justin Sands is a former college football player and Phoenix businessman, and both he and Bethanie reside in Phoenix, AZ with their little guy “Ruger” a boerboel mastiff.
Bethanie Mattek-Sands was born March 23, 1985 in Rochester, Minnesota to Tim and Heidi Mattek who currently reside in Boca Raton, FL along with their three other children Alison, Andrew and Chad. Tim is in the financial field as a CPA and Heidi is the head nurse of Labor and Delivery at West Boca Hospital. Alison is currently attending Dartmouth where she is studying for her Masters Degree, Chad is attending Florida State University and has maintained a 4.0 GPA in Criminal Justice and Foreign Affairs along with completing his first 6 weeks of Officer Candidate School for the Marines, and Andrew is a Junior at Boca West High School where he excels in both soccer and football. Bethanie began playing tennis at age 5 having trained at the world famous Evert Academy and played her first pro event at just 14yrs old (1999.) Mattek-Sands’s outgoing, fun and carefree personality has won her fans worldwide both on and off the court. She is also known for an adventurous sense of fashion having had many stories published about her on and off court attire and the unique personality she has brought to the game of tennis. Along with being a fashionista, during Mattek-Sands’s off weeks she can be found cooking it up at home in her kitchen and spending some of her down time enjoying the outdoors both hunting and fishing, shopping, 4x4 off roading and relaxing by the pool.