Alejandra's 40: a look back at Salazar's illustrious career so far

From the Valencia International Open in 2013 to the Estrella Damm Alicante Open 2022 in April, we break down all of Alejandra Salazar's 40 World Padel Tour wins!

Alejandra's 40: a look back at Salazar's illustrious career so far

With her victory in AlicanteAlejandra Salazar became the first-ever woman to reach 40 wins in the World Padel Tour era.

The Madrid-born is the most decorated player in women's WPT history, reaching number ones status twice in 2016 and 2021.

From the Valencia International Open in November 2013 to the Estrella Damm Alicante Open 2022 in April, we offer a look back at the illustrious career of Salazar and all of her 40 wins so far.

Also read: Alicante semi-finalists Las Heras/Virseda crack The Race 2022 top ten

Early World Padel Tour years

In the first two seasons of the World Padel Tour era, which started in 2013, Salazar played with the now-retired Icíar Montes.

Montes and Salazar finished the season as the fourth-seeded pairing but lifted their first-ever WPT title late in the year.

They beat 2013's number ones Eli Amatriaín and Patricia Llaguno in the Valencia International Open final, and would go on to win four more tournaments together until the end of 2014, when Montes announced her retirement.

They came incredibly close to being number ones in 2014 but were edged by Mapi and Majo Sánchez Alayeto, who won the Master Final to overtake them in the rankings.

The next step with Marrero

Salazar joined forces with Marta Marrero ahead of the 2015 season. Marrero had won just a single title in 2014 since converting to padel from tennis, but the two hit the ground running together.

They reached seven of the ten finals that year, winning three, only bested by the Atomic Twins Mapi and Majo again to number one status.

After two years of finishing runner-up, the stars aligned in 2016. Reaching ten of the 12 finals that year and winning over half of them, the Sánchez Alayeto twins were finally knocked off the throne. Marrero and Salazar became the number ones in 2016.

The title defence in 2017 would be cut short in Valladolid, the fourth tournament of the year. Alejandra went down in the final of the tournament, tearing her anterior cruciate ligament and ruling her out for the rest of the season. It was not her first ACL tear either, making the injury even scarier.

To this day, 2017 is the only WPT year where Salazar did not win a tournament.

The Madrid-born recovered for the 2018 season, where Salazar-Marrero had another incredible campaign. In the second half of the year, the Spaniards won five of the final seven events. However, they could not close the gap to the unstoppable Mapi and Majo, who would be crowned number ones for the fourth (and final) time.

Marrero and Salazar decided to go their separate ways at the end of 2018. With 16 wins and 27 finals reached in their four-year tenure, it is the second-most successful pairing in women's history, only behind the twins.

Ari and Ale join forces

For 2019, Salazar turned to the very young but extremely talented Ariana Sánchez, Marrero uniting with Sánchez's ex-partner Marta Ortega.

Ari and Ale against The Two Martas would be the new duel for top spot. Mapi Sánchez Alayeto had suffered a shoulder injury, ruling her out for most of the season.

The first nine tournaments were split five-four by Ortega/Marrero and Sánchez/Salazar respectively as they pulled away from the rest of the Circuit. With a superior second half of the season, Marrero and Ortega would be crowned number ones, although Salazar and Sánchez did win the Master Final.

Ariana and Alejandra would again come close in 2020, this time rivalling Lucía Sainz and Gemma Triay.

They had a slim lead over Triay and Sainz at the halfway point, but the latter pair would win five of the final six tournaments to overtake and bolster their lead. Sainz and Triay became the number ones and immediately announced their separation. After two years together, Sánchez and Salazar too decided to go their separate ways.

'Triazar' and domination

While nearly unthinkable now, Salazar and Triay did not look unstoppable to start the season. They 'only' won two of the first eight tournaments.

Then, they did. Triazar won five tournaments on the spin, winning 23 consecutive matches, the second-longest winning streak in the women's Circuit ever. Winning eight tournaments, also the second-most ever in a year, they were crowned number ones in Cordoba with two tournaments to go.

In Sardinia, after winning the Sardegna Open, Salazar overtook Mapi and Majo Sánchez Alayeto to become the player with most wins ever in women's history.

This brings us up to speed, with their title defence so far going brilliantly, winning three from four tournaments in 2022. In Alicante, Salazar won her 40th tournament. A beautiful milestone to remind the world that Alejandra Salazar has been at the top of World Padel Tour from the start, and still is.

With 40 to her name, there are undoubtedly still many, many more to come.

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