Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova, 33, announced her engagement to Alexander Gilkes, a friend of Prince William.
“I said yes from the first day we met. This was our little secret,” wrote Sharapova on her Instagram account Friday with a photo of her and her fiancé. Gilkes also wrote on his Instagram account, “Thank you for making me a very very happy boy and saying yes. I look forward to a lifetime of loving you, and learning from you.” The couple started dating in early 2018 and confirmed their relationship several months later.
Sharapova rose to stardom after beating Serena Williams at the 2004 Wimbledon final. She became the 10th woman to complete a career Grand Slam by winning the 2006 US Open, the 2010 Australia Open, and the French Open in 2012 and 2014. After retiring from tennis in February this year, she launched her candy business Sugarpova.
Gilkes co-founded the online art auction house Paddle 8 and is the co-founder of Squared Circles. The art dealer went to Eton College, where he met his schoolmate Prince William and Harry. He attended the wedding of Princess Eugenie, the granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth, in 2018.
Gilkes was married to British fashion designer Misha Nonoo in 2012 but the couple got divorced in 2017. Sharapova was engaged to professional basketball player Sasha Vujacic in 2010 but the couple broke up in 2012.
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