SINGAPORE – Hana Zalejska may have been disappointed by fellow Czech Karolina Pliskova’s loss to Sloane Stephens in the semi-finals of the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global on Saturday (Oct 27).
But her evening still ended on a high after her boyfriend Adrian Chia proposed to her after the first set at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
Zalejska, 26, used to play for the Czech junior team while the 37-year-old Chia picked up tennis about four years ago.
Chia, who works in a bank, said: “I was very nervous because she had no idea about this at all… we were first here (at the tournament) in 2016 and we didn’t make it here last year because she wasn’t in Singapore then.
“This year, she managed to be here, so I thought since this is the last year that it’s going to be held in Singapore, I might as well try and see if I can pull it off.
“She thought it was a kiss cam (at first) but the kiss didn’t come… then I stood up and got on my knee and she realised it was a proposal.”
The crowd cheered and applauded the happy couple.
ST PHOTO: ONG WEE JIN
Chia and Zalejska, who have been in a long-distance relationship for three years as she studies and lives in Taiwan, were congratulated by passing spectators as they spoke to The Sunday Times at the stadium.
She said: “I was super surprised, I didn’t expect it at all… it feels good (now). It was a nice thought and original idea.”
This article was first published in The Straits Times.