Tennis star, ARYNA SABALENKA returns to the court to train for Miami Open after shock death of her boyfriend KONSTANTIN KOLTSOV (PHOTOs)

Wednesday, March 20, 2024
 – World No.2 Aryna Sabalenka has been seen preparing for the Miami Open just 24 hours after the shock death of her boyfriend Konstantin Koltsov.

Koltsov, who had been dating Australian Open champion Sabalenka, 25, for three years, died at the age of 42 on Monday in an apparent suicide after jumping from a hotel balcony in Miami.

The Belarusian former professional hockey player is believed to have joined his girlfriend in the city as she prepared for the Miami Open, where she begins her campaign this Friday.

Despite his apparent suicide, the Tennis Channel is reporting that Sabalenka still intends to play the tournament in the Sunshine State this month.

On Tuesday, she returned to the court to practice ahead of her Round of 64 tie on Friday, when she is due to meet the winner of Simona Halep and Paula Badosa's opening round match.

Miami-Dade police disclosed that the investigation into Kolstov's death is being treated as an apparent suicide.

Bal Harbour Police and Fire Rescue were dispatched to the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort in reference to a male who jumped from a balcony at 12.39am ET Monday, according to investigators.

Reports from his native Belarus had initially claimed that Kolstov had died of a 'detached blood clot'.

Koltsov, who played hockey for the NHL's Pittsburgh Penguins, was confirmed dead by his former club Salavat Yulaev Ufa on the social messaging site Telegram on Tuesday.

'It is with deep sorrow that we inform you that the coach of Salavat Yulaev, Konstantin Koltsov, has passed away,' the Russian club's statement read.

'He was a strong and cheerful person, he was loved and respected by players, colleagues, and fans. Konstantin 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 death of Sabalenka's partner comes just five years after she lost her father Sergey following his sudden death at 43.

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