Famous Russian Sportspersons

Find out more about the greatest Russian Sportspersons, including Fedor Emelianenko, Anna Kournikova, Garry Kasparov, Maria Sharapova and Khabib Nurmagomedov.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Khabib Nurmagomedov

Khabib Nurmagomedov
47
Famous As: Mixed martial artist
Birthdate: September 20, 1988
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sil'di, Russia

Russian professional mixed martial artist, Khabib Nurmagomedov, is known for holding the longest active undefeated streak in MMA, with 28 wins and no losses. In September 2020, he was named #2 in the UFC men's pound-for-pound rankings. He practices Islam and is the first Muslim to win a UFC title.

 2 Maria Sharapova

Maria Sharapova
23
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: April 19, 1987
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Nyagan, Russia
One of Time’s 30 Legends of Women's Tennis, Maria Sharapova, the first Russian woman tennis player to top the singles rankings, earned three doubles and five Grand Slam titles. A failed drug test led to her temporary suspension. She bounced back with modeling and launched her confectionary brand Sugarpova.

 3 Garry Kasparov

Garry Kasparov
12
Famous As: Chess Player
Birthdate: April 13, 1963
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Baku, Azerbaijan

Garry Kasparov is a Russian chess player. A grandmaster, Kasparov is a former World Chess Champion who was ranked No. 1 for 255 months during his career that spanned 21 years. After his retirement, Garry Kasparov focused on writing and politics; he founded a social movement called the United Civil Front, which is part of an opposition coalition in Moscow.

 4 Roy Jones Jr.

Roy Jones Jr.
15
Famous As: Boxer
Birthdate: January 16, 1969
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Pensacola, Florida, United States

Former American boxer Roy Jones Jr. was born to a boxer father. Despite his defeat in the gold medal match at the 1988 Seoul Olympics due to a faulty decision by the judges, he won the Val Barker Award. He was the second light heavyweight champion to earn a heavyweight title.

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 5 Fedor Emelianenko

Fedor Emelianenko
12
Famous As: Mixed martial artist
Birthdate: September 28, 1976
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Rubizhne, Ukraine
Russian mixed martial artist, judoka, and sambist Fedor Emelianenko, also known as “The Last Emperor,” competes for Bellator MMA and the Rizin Fighting Federation. He went from being a firefighter to Sports Illustrated’s top MMA fighter of the 2000s. He is also part of the Russian Presidential Council on sports.

 6 Anna Kournikova

Anna Kournikova
9
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: June 7, 1981
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Anna Kournikova was once world no. 8 in singles tennis rankings, in spite of never having won a singles title. She was no. 1 in doubles, teaming up with Martina Hingis. Following her retirement from tennis due to a spinal issue, she became a popular TV personality.
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 7 Alexander Ovechkin

Alexander Ovechkin
7
Famous As: Ice hockey player
Birthdate: September 17, 1985
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Alexander Ovechkin is a Russian ice hockey player who currently captains the Washington Capitals, a popular team which competes in the National Hockey League (NHL). Considered one of the greatest players of all time, Alexander Ovechkin has won prestigious awards, such as the Rocket Richard Trophy, Art Ross Trophy, Hart Memorial Trophy, Lester B. Pearson Award, and Calder Memorial Trophy.

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 8 Lev Yashin

Lev Yashin
6
Famous As: Football Player
Birthdate: October 22, 1929
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: March 20, 1990
Legendary Soviet goalkeeper Lev Yashin was nicknamed the Black Spider or the Black Panther for his signature all-black attire. He played in four World Cups and later also served as the deputy chairman of the Football Federation of his country. He became the only goalkeeper to win the Ballon d'Or.
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 9 Zyzz (Aziz Shavershian)

Zyzz (Aziz Shavershian)
9
Famous As: Body Builder, Internet Personality
Birthdate: March 24, 1989
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: August 5, 2011

Aziz Shavershian was a Russian-born Australian personal trainer, bodybuilder, and model. He started posting videos on YouTube in 2007, establishing a cult following. Aziz was the poster boy of aesthetics, a subculture of amateur bodybuilding. Before his death, due to a heart attack, Aziz Shavershian had established a clothing line and his own protein label called Protein of the Gods.

 10 Anatoly Karpov

Anatoly Karpov
5
Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: May 23, 1951
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Zlatoust, Russia

Russian chess grandmaster, Anatoly Karpov, was the official world champion from 1975 to 1985, before finally being defeated by Garry Kasparov. With over 160 first-place finishes, Karpov is widely considered one of the greatest players in history. Since his retirement, he has involved himself in several humanitarian causes. He has an extensive stamp collection.

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 11 Sergey Kovalev

Sergey Kovalev
4
Famous As: Boxer
Birthdate: April 2, 1983
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kopeysk, Russia

Sergey Kovalev is a Russian boxer who has held several world championships in the light heavyweight category. From 2014 to 2016, he held the IBF and WBA (Undisputed) titles. Between 2013 and 2019, he held the WBO title three times. Kovalev is renowned for his extraordinary punching power. In 2019, The Ring magazine named him the world's second-best light heavyweight.

 12 Boris Spassky

Boris Spassky
3
Famous As: Chess Grandmaster
Birthdate: January 30, 1937
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Boris Spassky is a Russian chess player who held the World Chess Championship title from 1969 to 1972. He was part of the famous World Chess Championship match in 1972 where he lost his championship title to Bobby Fischer of the United States. In Bobby Fischer's 2014 biopic Pawn Sacrifice, Boris Spassky is portrayed by American actor Isaac Liev Schreiber.

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 13 Kostya Tszyu

Kostya Tszyu
3
Famous As: Boxer
Birthdate: September 19, 1969
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Serov, Russia

Kostya Tszyu is a former boxer who held multiple light-welterweight championships. Renowned for his punching power, Tszyu is considered one of the hardest-punching boxers in the history of light-welterweight boxing. He represented the Soviet Union at the 1991 World Championships, where he won a gold medal. In 2010, Tszyu was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.

 14 Alina Kabaeva

Alina Kabaeva
11
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: May 12, 1983
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Tashkent, Uzbekistan
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 15 Yulia Lipnitskaya

Yulia Lipnitskaya
30
Famous As: Skater
Birthdate: June 5, 1998
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Yekaterinburg, Russia

Yulia Lipnitskaya stunned her fans with the news of her retirement at the tender age of 19. Apparently, she had been struggling with injuries and anorexia. The Russian professional figure skater won an Olympic gold at 15, thus becoming the youngest Russian gold medalist in history.

 16 Nikolai Valuev

Nikolai Valuev
5
Famous As: Boxer
Birthdate: August 21, 1973
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
The Russian Giant Nikolai Valuev has been the WBA heavyweight champion twice, and at 149 kg and 7 ft., is the heaviest and tallest champion ever. Severe health issues caused him to retire from boxing, following which he appeared in films such as Stonehead and became a State Duma member.

 17 Alexander Godunov

Alexander Godunov
4
Famous As: Ballet Dancer
Birthdate: November 28, 1949
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Sakhalin, Russia
Died: May 18, 1995
Russian ballet dancer Alexander Godunov was part of the Bolshoi Ballet. He defected to the U.S. in 1979, causing significant U.S.-Soviet tension. He had also appeared in many films, such as Anna Karenina and Die Hard. His final days were marked by alcoholism, which also eventually caused his death.

 18 Alexander Povetkin

Alexander Povetkin
7
Famous As: Professional Boxer
Birthdate: September 2, 1979
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kursk, Russia

Alexander Povetkin is a Russian professional boxer who won an Olympic gold medal for his country in 2004. The current WBC interim heavyweight champion, Povetkin was ranked the fourth-best active heavyweight in the world by The Ring magazine in 2020. Alexander Povetkin is also regarded as one of the best active boxers, pound for pound.

 19 Zabit Magomedsharipov

Zabit Magomedsharipov
4
Famous As: Mixed martial artist
Birthdate: March 1, 1991
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Khasavyurt, Russia

Zabit Magomedsharipov is a Russian mixed martial artist who currently competes in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). In the 2018 World MMA Awards, he was honored with the Submission of the Year award for his fight against Brandon Davis. Prior to his UFC career, Zabit Magomedsharipov was a featherweight champion in the Absolute Championship Berkut (ACB). 

 20 Sergei Fedorov

Sergei Fedorov
4
Famous As: Ice hockey player
Birthdate: December 13, 1969
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Pskov
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 21 Maurice Tillet

Maurice Tillet
4
Famous As: Wrestler
Birthdate: October 23, 1903
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ural Mountains, Russia
Died: September 4, 1954

Maurice Tillet was a Russian professional wrestler. A two-time AWA World Heavyweight Champion, Tillet was a very successful and popular wrestler at that time. He even appeared as The Swedish Angel in the 1949 American fantasy film Mighty Joe Young. Maurice Tillet was posthumously inducted into the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2012.

 22 Artem Lobov

Artem Lobov
4
Famous As: Mixed martial artist
Birthdate: August 11, 1986
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Nizhny Novgorod, Russia

Artem Lobov is a Russian retired boxer and mixed martial artist. He competed in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) in the Featherweight division and earned one Fight of the Night award. He also competed in other popular promotions, such as the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship, Cage Contender, and Cage Warriors.

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 23 Daniil Kvyat

Daniil Kvyat
9
Famous As: Racecar driver
Birthdate: April 26, 1994
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ufa

 24 Sergey Bubka

Sergey Bubka
5
Famous As: Pole Vaulter
Birthdate: December 4, 1963
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Luhansk, Ukraine

Russian star pole-vaulter Sergey Bubka had started training at age 9. He soared to fame after winning the world championship in Finland at age 15 and later became the first to jump 6.1m. He won the 1988 Seoul Olympic gold and shattered the global men’s pole vault record 35 times.

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 25 Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa

Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa
4
Famous As: Actor, Martial artist
Birthdate: September 27, 1950
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

Currently a Russian citizen, Japanese actor and martial artist Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa began his training in martial art while in junior school and acting while studying in Duarte High School, California, making his breakthrough as the Eunuch Chang in The Last Emperor. Thereafter he continued to appear in numerous productions, concurrently developing a new form of martial arts called Chun Shin

 26 Alexander Alekhine

Alexander Alekhine
5
Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: October 31, 1892
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: March 24, 1946

Alexander Alekhine was a French and Russian chess player renowned for his imaginative and fierce attacking style. He also possessed great positional and endgame skill, which he used effectively to reign as the World Chess Champion from 1927 to 1935 and then from 1937 to 1946. Also a theoretician, Alexander Alekhine innovated several opening variations, including the Alekhine's Defence.

 27 Sofia Kenin

Sofia Kenin
7
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: November 14, 1998
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Sofia Kenin is an American tennis player who won her first Grand Slam title in 2020 when she defeated Garbiñe Muguruza in the Australian Open. By virtue of her Australian Open triumph, Sofia Kenin received the prestigious WTA Player of the Year award in the same year. She is renowned for her persistent determination and mental toughness.

 28 Ekaterina Gordeeva

Ekaterina Gordeeva
133
Famous As: Figure skater
Birthdate: May 28, 1971
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

 29 Pavel Datsyuk

Pavel Datsyuk
4
Famous As: Ice hockey player
Birthdate: July 20, 1978
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Yekaterinburg, Russia

 30 Sergei Grinkov

Sergei Grinkov
65
Famous As: Fgure skater
Birthdate: February 4, 1967
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: November 20, 1995

 31 Andrey Arshavin

Andrey Arshavin
4
Famous As: Football Player
Birthdate: May 29, 1981
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Andrey Arshavin is a Russian former football player who helped Zenit Saint Petersburg win several trophies, such as the League Cup, Russian Premier League, UEFA Cup, Russian Super Cup, and the UEFA Super Cup. He was also an important player for the Russian national football team and helped the team reach the semi-final of UEFA Euro 2008.

 32 Abubakar Nurmagomedov

Abubakar Nurmagomedov
3
Famous As: Mixed martial artist
Birthdate: November 13, 1989
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Makhachkala, Russia

 33 Evgeni Malkin

Evgeni Malkin
4
Famous As: Ice Hockey Player
Birthdate: July 31, 1986
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Magnitogorsk, Russia

 34 Becky Hammon

Becky Hammon
6
Famous As: Basketball player
Birthdate: March 11, 1977
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Rapid City, South Dakota, United States

 35 Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov

Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov
5
Famous As: Coach, Athletic
Birthdate: December 10, 1962
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Sil'di, Russia
Died: July 3, 2020

 36 Alexandra Trusova

Alexandra Trusova
81
Famous As: Figure Skater
Birthdate: June 23, 2004
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Ryazan, Russia

 37 Alexander Emelianenko

Alexander Emelianenko
3
Famous As: Mixed Martial Artist
Birthdate: August 2, 1981
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Stary Oskol, Russia

 38 Khamzat Chimaev

Khamzat Chimaev
4
Famous As: Mixed martial artist
Birthdate: May 1, 1994
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Chechnya, Russia

Russia-born Swedish freestyle wrestler and mixed martial artist Khamzat Chimaev began wrestling as a child, possibly to save himself from the bullies. Eventually, he took up freestyle wrestling, winning the Swedish Championship three times between 2015 and 2018, thereafter emerging as an award winning mixed martial artist. Currently, he competes in the welterweight and middleweight divisions of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

 39 Mikhail Botvinnik

Mikhail Botvinnik
3
Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: August 17, 1911
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Repino, Russia
Died: May 5, 1995

Soviet chess player Mikhail Botvinnik was a three-time World Champion. At 14, he defeated the reigning world champion José Raúl Capablanca in an exhibition match. He was also a skilled computer engineer. He adopted a scientific approach to chess and penned several books on chess, too.

 40 Timofey Mozgov

Timofey Mozgov
3
Famous As: Basketball player who won the bronze medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics
Birthdate: July 16, 1986
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

 41 Karen Khachanov

Karen Khachanov
5
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: May 21, 1996
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Born to doctor parents in Moscow, Karen Khachanov developed an interest in tennis at the tender age of 3. After gaining attention with his Davis Cup debut in 2013, he earned his first Challenger title in Istanbul 2 years later. He has 4 ATP singles titles in his kitty.

 42 Tigran Petrosian

Tigran Petrosian
3
Famous As: Chess player, Writer
Birthdate: June 17, 1929
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgia
Died: August 13, 1984

 43 Svetlana Khorkina

Svetlana Khorkina
5
Famous As: Gymnast
Birthdate: January 19, 1979
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Belgorod, Russia

 44 Arman Tsarukyan

Arman Tsarukyan
3
Famous As: Mixed martial artist
Birthdate: October 11, 1996
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Akhalkalaki, Georgia

 45 Evgenia Medvedeva

Evgenia Medvedeva
3700
Famous As: Figure skater
Birthdate: November 19, 1999
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Evgenia Medvedeva is a Russian figure skater who has won two silver Olympic medals, two World Championship gold medals, and two European Championship gold medals. At the 2017 World Championships, Medvedeva became the first 16-year-old female skater after Michelle Kwan to win back-to-back world titles. Evgenia Medvedeva is also the first skater to achieve two Grand Slams in a row. 

 46 Petr Yan

Petr Yan
4
Famous As: Mixed Martial Artist
Birthdate: February 11, 1993
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Dudinka, Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia

Petr Yan is a Russian mixed martial artist who competes in the UFC. A former UFC Bantamweight Champion, Yan is currently ranked first in the UFC bantamweight rankings. He has won a Fight of the Night and a Performance of the Night award in his UFC career so far. Prior to his UFC career, Yan was an ACB Bantamweight Champion.

 47 Anna Shcherbakova

Anna Shcherbakova
55
Famous As: Figure skater
Birthdate: March 28, 2004
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

 48 Daniil Medvedev

Daniil Medvedev
6
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: February 11, 1996
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Daniil Medvedev is a Russian tennis player who won his first Grand Slam title in 2021 when he defeated Djokovic in straight sets to win the US Open. Standing at 6 feet 6 inches tall, Medvedev became the tallest Grand Slam champion in the history of the Open Era. His height played a decisive role in his US Open victory.

 49 Svetlana Boginskaya

Svetlana Boginskaya
6
Famous As: Gymnast
Birthdate: February 9, 1973
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

Known as the Belarusian Swan, Svetlana Boginskaya started off as a figure skater before moving on to gymnastics at age 6. By 14, she was part of the Soviet national gymnastics team. The three-time Olympic champion is now settled in Texas and owns businesses that provide gymnastics camps and apparel.

 50 Valeri Bure

Valeri Bure
6
Famous As: Ice Hockey Player
Birthdate: June 13, 1974
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Valeri Bure is a former ice hockey player who played for popular teams in the National Hockey League. In 1991, he became the first Russian to play in the Western Hockey League. An important ex-member of the Russian men's national ice hockey team, Bure helped his nation win silver and a bronze at the 1998 and 2002 Winter Olympics respectively.