The WTA has announced that former British No. 1 Elena Baltacha passed away after a battle with liver cancer earlier on Sunday. She was just 30.
Baltacha was diagnosed with the disease in January, two months after she retired from the game. At age 19 she was diagnosed with primary sclerosing cholangitis, a chronic liver condition which compromises the immune system.
She was survived by her husband Nino Severino.
“We are heartbroken beyond words at the loss of our beautiful, talented and determined Bally. She was an amazing person and she touched so many people with her inspirational spirit, her warmth and her kindness,” Severino said in a statement.
Born in Kiev, Baltacha reached a career-high No. 49 in September 2010. She reached the third round at the Australian Open twice and once at her home event at Wimbledon.
On twitter, several players gave their thoughts on Baltacha.
Just woke up in Madrid. So sad to hear the news about Elena Baltacha :( RIP
— Petra Kvitova (@Petra_Kvitova) May 5, 2014
So sad to wake up to the terrible news of Elena passing away! RIP Bally! Thinking about her loved ones …
— Kim Clijsters (@Clijsterskim) May 5, 2014
RIP Elena Baltacha…My thoughts and condolences to her family! what a tough loss for tennis world
— victoria azarenka (@vika7) May 5, 2014
I have nothing to say, so empty.. RIP Elena… Not fair …my thoughts goes to her family .. She was such a beautiful person ..
— Svetlana Kuznetsova (@SvetlanaK27) May 5, 2014
We've lost our lovely Bally, too young. Rest in peace. My thought are with Nino and all of her family xx
— Heather Watson (@HeatherWatson92) May 5, 2014
I have no worlds to describe my sadness. RIP @ElenaBaltacha
— Marion bartoli (@bartoli_marion) May 5, 2014
Sorry and sad to hear that Elena Baltacha has left us. My thoughts go to her family and friends. She will be missed!!!
— Angelique Kerber (@AngeliqueKerber) May 5, 2014
So sad to hear about Elena Baltacha! RIP! Thoughts go out to her family and loved ones!
— Caroline Wozniacki (@CaroWozniacki) May 5, 2014
Very sad day for tennis..Elena Baltacha lost the battle against liver cancer at age 30..All our thoughts with her and her family.RIP.
— Feliciano López (@feliciano_lopez) May 5, 2014
So sad to hear of Elena Baltacha's passing- my thoughts are with her family and loved ones, gone much much too soon…
— Martina Navratilova (@Martina) May 5, 2014
D.E.P Elena Baltacha,un golpe duro para el tenis.
— David Ferrer (@DavidFerrer87) May 5, 2014
RIP Elena Baltacha…thoughts and condolences with her family. Tough loss for a tennis world…
— Vera Zvonareva (@verazvonareva) May 5, 2014
My deepest prayers, thoughts, concern and love goes out to Elena Baltacha's family. I am deeply sorry for your loss. Revelation 21:4
— Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) May 5, 2014
How unfair life can be… #ElenaBaltacha
— Alize Cornet (@alizecornet) May 5, 2014
Life's too short and very very unfair sometimes..u were too young to go..Rest in Peace Elena Baltacha..u will be missed terribly
— Sania Mirza (@MirzaSania) May 5, 2014
So sad to hear about Elena Baltacha.our prayers go out to her closest family:((all tennis world is thinking of Elena today..:(smutna sprava
— Daniela Hantuchová (@dhantuchova) May 5, 2014
Impossibly sad. Forever a teammate. Sweet dreams Bally.
— Laura Robson (@laurarobson5) May 5, 2014
So saddened to hear the news of Ballys passing. The tennis world will miss you. Thoughts are with her family & friends.
— caseydellacqua (@caseydellacqua) May 4, 2014
RIP@ElenaBaltacha!Cant believe this happened!So young,friendly,kind!Sunshine w big heart!Have no words to express the sadness!We'll miss u😓
— Anastasia Pivovarova (@A_Pivovarova) May 5, 2014
Extremely saddened this afternoon to hear that we have lost a member of the @WTA family. Bally you will be missed!
— CoCo Vandeweghe (@CoCoVandey) May 5, 2014
Absolutely heartbreaking news- to hear about Elena Baltacha . Bally, you will be sorely missed
— Paul Annacone (@paul_annacone) May 4, 2014
Saddened and humbled this afternoon to hear that we lost a member of the @WTA family. Elena Baltacha will truly be missed!!
— Bethanie MattekSands (@BMATTEK) May 4, 2014
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