Ana on cover of Sports Illustrated

Ana on cover of Sports Illustrated

Ana is on the cover of the new issue of Sports Illustrated in South Africa,, which went on sale yesterday.

Under the headline "Ana from Heaven" (a play on the term "manna from heaven"), Ana is lovingly portrayed by the writer Paul Fein as the world's foremost female athlete. The publication describes her as a "tennis goddess".

The following is a reproduction of the introduction of the feature:

This year has marked the entrance onto the world’s stage of ANA IVANOVIC. Breathtakingly beautiful and very talented, the Serbian tennis star has blazed up the WTA Tour rankings. We never… ever… thought we’d say this, but she may even be better than Maria. What? Who said that?

Male tennis fans have never had it so good. Not only do we have the statuesque Ms Sharapova to gaze at, but 2008 has seen the rise of another eastern European goddess – Ana Ivanovic. And it was tennis nirvana at this year’s Australian Open Final when both women took to the centre court to fight for the championship. Sharapova might’ve triumphed then to win her third grand slam, but the 1.85m Serb with movie star looks has subsequently overtaken the Russian in the official WTA Tour rankings (Ana 2…Maria 5)… and, dare we say it, in many a tennis fan’s heart....

The full text of the interview will be posted in the coming weeks