Magdalena Maleeva

Magdalena Maleeva

Founder and mentor

Magdalena is the youngest of the Maleeva sisters. She set up Gorichka in 2006, a nonprofit initiative for education and debate on sustainable development and climate change. Later on she and her husband set up the harmonica brand for organic food, first ever in Bulgaria. They are also proud owners of organic food chain stores and proud parents of Youlia, Marco and Nina.

Professional and Tennis Career

She won the Bulgarian Nationals at age 13 years and 4 months to become the youngest ever Bulgarian Women`s Champion. Only the Bulgarian Tennis Federation`s archives can prove if she was the oldest as well – in 2010, at age 35 and mother of two toddlers she won again the Bulgarian Nationals.

Her career as a professional tennis player started in 1989. In 1990 she won three Grand Slam Junior Tournaments – Australian Open, French Open and US Open. She entered the women`s top ten three years later – May 3, 1993. Her highest ranking was number 4 in the world achieved on January 29 1996. She was right behind Steffi Graf, Arancha Sanches-Vicario and Conchitta Martinez.
Magdalena won 12 singles titles and 11 more times was runner-up.
She won 5 doubles tournaments and played 7 more finals.

She played in 34 Grand Slam tournaments. She was a quarterfinalist at the US Open in 1992 and has reached 1/8 finals another 14 times (Australia 1991, 1993, 1994 and 2002; Roland Garros in 1993, 1996, 2003 and 2004; Wimbledon in 2001 and 2002, 2005; and US Open in 1993 and 1994).

A shoulder operation in 1988 stopped her from playing tournaments. For a second time in her life she started climbing to the top in 1999 and succeeded in reaching №11 on July 6 2003.

She has qualified for the Masters 5 times but only participated on 4 occasions. She reached quarterfinals at the Masters in Los Angeles in 2002.

Throughout her career Magdalena has won 430 out of a total of 707 matches which places her at number 31 in the historic chart.

She participated in 3 Olympic Games.

Magdalena was on the Bulgarian Fed Cup Team 9 times, serving twice (2003, 2005) as playing captain. In 1995 she was on the team with sister Katerina and played the historic match in Sofia against Spain. The media called that day “Easter day of Bulgarian tennis”.

Magdalena had wins over tennis greats, such as Martina Navratilova, Arancha Sanches-Vicario, Conchita Martinez, Lindsay Davenport, Jennifer Capriati, Venus Williams, Amelie Mauresmo, Justine Henin-Ardenne, Mary Pierce.

She has three children – Youlia, Marco, Nina.

She speaks Bulgarian, English, French.