Aryna Sabalenka’s partner Konstantin Koltsov passes away in Miami

Konstantin Koltsov
Photo by Icon Sport

Belarusian tennis sensation Aryna Sabalenka is mourning the loss of her beloved partner, Konstantin Koltsov. The former NHL player tragically died at the age of 42 in Miami, where he was supporting the reigning Australian Open champion for the second leg of the Sunshine Double.

Koltsov played for the Belarusian national team in the 2002 and 2010 Winter Olympics. He was also on the roster of the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins from 2002 and 2006.

The devastating news of Koltsov’s passing was confirmed by his former club, Salavat Yulaev Ufa, through a sombre announcement on social media. Reports from Belarusian media suggested that Koltsov succumbed to a detached blood clot, shedding light on the sudden and unexpected nature of his demise.

“It is with deep sorrow that we inform you that the coach of Salavat Yulaev, Konstantin Koltsov, has passed away,” Ufa’s statement read.

“He was a strong and cheerful person, he was loved and respected by players, colleagues, and fans. Konstantin Evgenievich forever wrote himself into the history of our club.

“Koltsov won the Russian Championship and the Gagarin Cup as part of Salavat Yulaev, and did a great job on the team’s coaching staff.

“May his memory burn bright.”

The Belarusian Hockey Federation, in a poignant statement, expressed its deepest sympathies to Koltsov’s family and loved ones.

Sabalenka’s personal loss and resilience

The hockey world, along with fans and colleagues, mourned the loss of Koltsov, paying heartfelt tributes to the cherished athlete. Condolences flooded in from all corners, reflecting the profound impact Koltsov had on those around him.

For Sabalenka, Koltsov’s passing represents another profound loss in her life, having previously endured the untimely death of her father, who was also a professional ice hockey player.

Aryna Sablenka partner

Their relationship, marked by love and mutual support, was a source of strength for the tennis star. Despite facing adversity, Sabalenka’s unwavering determination and resilience have been evident both on and off the court.

Sabalenka and Koltsov are thought to have dated for three years, after first being linked in June 2021  and the world number two has frequently posted photos of them together on her Instagram account.

Aryna Sabalenka 1
Photo by Icon Sport

“I love you @koltsov2021,” she had written in one post that included heart and other emojis.

“Happy birthday my love. You are my dearest person, my best friend and my strongest support. Peace be with you, strength, patience and health,” another read. “I hope we will have everything we planned I love you.”

It was a mutual feeling of respect. On International Women’s Day, Koltsov commemorated the occasion by sharing a gallery of pictures dedicated to Sabalenka, celebrating the tennis star’s achievements and contributions to the sport: “Happy holiday, my love, I love you madly.”

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