Former World No. 1 Victoria Azarenka has given birth to her first child, a boy, with partner Billy McKeague, this morning. The two-time Australian Open champion took to Twitter to reveal the news, sharing a photograph of herself with the newborn, whose name has not been revealed.
Describing his birth as her “hardest fight and best victory,” Azarenka told fans she was “thankful and blessed” for a happy and healthy child.
26-year-old Azarenka announced her pregnancy earlier this year, revealing she would be on hiatus until some time after the birth. Regarded as one of the sport’s power hitters, the Belarusian ace has reiterated that she will be returning to the sport fit and ready to win more titles, following in the footsteps of former No. 1 Kim Clijsters, who made a roaring comeback to tennis following the birth of her first two children.
Azarenka won titles in Indian Wells and Miami this March, announcing that she was pregnant shortly afterwards.
Several of tennis’ top players took to Twitter to congratulate Azarenka on the birth of her son. British No. 2 Laura Robson was the first to respond, with Swiss ace Belinda Bencic and Australian Daria Gavrilova also wishing the Belarusian.
But perhaps the most significant wishes came from former World No. 1 and 18-time Singles Slam winner Martina Navratilova, who was among the earliest to wish ‘Vika’.