Sharapova won't request Wimbledon wild card

Solenn Plantier
Mai 20, 2017

Maria Sharapova has revealed that she will attempt to secure her place at Wimbledon through the qualifying rounds rather than requesting a wildcard.

On Tuesday (May 16), the 30-year-old who returned to tennis last month after serving a 15-month drugs ban was denied a wildcard to the French Open, which starts at Roland Garros in Paris on May 28.

The former world No1 had seen her odds of being given a free pass into the Wimbledon main draw drift from 1/3 to 7/4 in the wake of the French Open snub.

Sharapova committed to the Aegon Classic for this year and next year in return for a wild card, British Lawn Tennis Association chief executive Michael Downey said. "I am looking forward to seeing all the recent improvements the tournament has made to establish itself as one of the best grass court events in the world", she added.

The 2004 champion is ranked 211, below the cut-off for direct entry, but her first-round win at this week's Italian Open means she is assured a place in the qualifying tournament, played a few miles away from Wimbledon.

Early past year, Sharapova announced that doping tests revealed the presence of the banned performance enhancing drug, meldonium, in her body.

"All players receive ranking points and prize money and there is more money and ranking points on offer the more matches that they win", said Wimbledon's website.

Maria Sharapova has been granted a wildcard for next month's WTA grasscourt event in Birmingham, a key Wimbledon warm-up, organisers said Thursday. And after the French Open had also declined to help her out, even with a wild card into qualifying, she clearly realised that she would be banging on a locked door.

The five-time Grand Slam champions returned to competitions in April and competed in tournaments in Stuttgart, Madrid and Rome.

Earlier in the week, Sharapova withdrew from the second-round match of the Italian Open during the game against Croatia's Mirjana Lucic-Baroni. However, the Swiss-based Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruled on October 4, 2016 to cut her suspension term from 24 to 15 months.

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