Originally written on Tennis Panorama  |  Last updated 11/18/14

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 26: Maria Kirilenko of Russia walks to her chair between games in her quarterfinal match against Jie Zheng of China during day nine of the 2010 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 26, 2010 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)
Maria Kirilenko This week tournament organizers  of the Tournament of Champions Sofia announced that Russian’s Maria Kirilenko would receive the second available wild card into the eight-woman contest, joining home-grown favorite Tsvetana Pironkova, who enjoys one of the highest profiles of any Bulgarian athlete and whose wild card was allocated earlier in the year.   Five-time WTA singles titlist Kirilenko, 25, has enjoyed a career season, reaching the quarterfinals at Wimbledon and winning a bronze medal in doubles at the London Olympics with fellow Russian Nadia Petrova. After finishing runner-up at New Haven in August, Kirilenko moved to a new career high ranking of No.12 and is currently at No.15.   “I am really looking forward to playing at the Tournament of Champions in Sofia, and seeing my fans there,” said Kirilenko. “It will be my first visit but I’ve heard great things about the city. I would like to thank BTF President Stefan Tzvetkov for this opportunity to compete – i...
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