Queen Maria back on her throne after injury battle | Pakistan Today

Queen Maria back on her throne after injury battle

It was no coincidence on Thursday that when it became certain that Maria Sharapova was back as world number one, there was general satisfaction within the WTA and in women’s tennis in general. The Russian is unmistakenly the sport’s glamour girl, it’s biggest draw and, in a hugely competitive market a valuable motor and spearhead for all concerned. More than that, she is the most recognisable sportswoman in the world and the biggest earner, rivalling even the big boys in male sport.
How she got there has been well documented over the years – from her humble beginnings in the small Siberian town of Nyagan to the Nick Bollettieri tennis academy courts in Florida. Leaving her mother behind in Russia at the age of nine and travelling and living on the cheap with father Yuri before making her tournament debut in 2001 in an ITF event in Sarasota. Sharapova has not forgotten those years and her roots back in Siberia. “I’m really happy and proud of where I came from and where I was born and how it’s fun to hear when they introduce me, they don’t say just born in Russia, they actually say I was born in Nyagan, Siberia,” she said earlier in the tournament at Roland Garros. “Every time they say that, you can hear the crowd going, Whoa. Like I don’t think people actually realize that’s where I was born.
“When they say it, I always feel so proud, no matter – like when they even say I’ve won the Grand Slams or been number one. When they say that, I get goosebumps, because I’m so proud coming from there and getting to the position I am today.”
Sharapova has always been precocious and it was at Wimbledon in 2004 as a 17-year-old that she took the tennis world by storm, and by shrieks, as she powered her way into the final and proceeded to blast her way past Serena Williams, then the dominant force in the game, for her first Grand Slam title. A star was born from that moment on as the world became aware of the tall, beautiful blonde with a steely determination and a thunderous forehand  Sharapova immediately became an ad man’s dream and her face and silhouette have since adorned many products from perfumes to clothes.



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