At around 10:30am Eastern Standard Time, R-Sport posted an article in Russian that Capitals captain Alexander Ovechkin and his fiancee Maria Kirilenko have ended their engagement.
Alex Ovechkin and Maria Kirilenko first met at the US Open in 2011. The Capitals superstar was there for a preseason media gathering with a few other NHL stars and scored some free tickets to the US Open. He eventually wondered over to a practice court where Kirilenko and her doubles partner, Nadia Petrova were practicing. All three of them, being Russian, struck up a conversation at the practice court and Ovechkin exchanged numbers with Maria Kirilenko. Ovechkin attended Kirilenko’s semifinal match, which she and Petrova lost.
The two kept in contact over Skype as Kirilenko returned to Moscow and Ovechkin stayed in DC. Eventually, the two star athletes became Russia’s most athletic couple.
Kirilenko would often stay in DC and go to Capitals games at the Verizon Center. She became a popular twitter presence with Capitals fans as she heavily supported her boyfriend at the time. A little under two years later, the two got engaged while celebrating the new year in Russia on January 1st, 2013.
Over a year and a half later, Russia’s power couple are splitting ways.
Kirilenko released an official statement on the matter this morning:
“I have made a decision to break up our engagement. There are a lot of reasons, but I wouldn’t want to go in detail. I’ll say just that our relationship is over, but I respect Sasha (Alex) as a person and an athlete and sincerely wish him athletic success in the future.
I’m currently concentrating on preparing for my tennis tournaments and I hope that soon I’ll be able to please my fans with news about my success as an athlete and not just in personal life.”
Early on in their relationship, the two were often spotted together as well as very active with each other on social media. Maria Kilrilenko’s Instagram has been filled with pictures of her and Ovechkin together over the past three years.
Recently, the two have seen a decline in being caught together. Typically Ovechkin would support Kirilenko in her tennis endeavors and has even been seen carrying her tennis racket bags. This year, instead of being with her at Wimbledon, Ovechkin went to Las Vegas a few days early for the NHL Awards ceremonies and seemed to have a great time.
Ovechkin then was the head judge at Miss Moscow 2014. Following judging Russia’s capitals best women, he went to the beaches in France to spend time with some friends.
UPDATE (5:40PM): Sports Illustrated’s Allan Muir has reported today that Ovechkin and Kirilenko’s engagement was called off by Kirilenko over an Instagram photo that shows Ovechkin with Russian gymnast Karolina Sevastianova. The Instagram photo that showed Ovechkin with Sevastianova was posted by Ovechkin’s friend Vitaly Fridzon who is a Russian basketball player. Within the last 22 hours, Ovechkin posted an Instagram video of him running into some waves at an unknown beach.