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Sharapova had a lovely run at the US Open. Will Maria return to the court again?

Date: May 20, 2024 Time: 03:04:01

Five-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova retired in February 2020. Sharapova focused on business and personal life with her beloved British millionaire Alexander Gilks. On July 1, 2022, Maria gave birth to a son, Theodore.

The WTA circuit has noticeably lost its appeal after María’s departure. The return of the Russian would instantly make her the most popular and discussed tennis player in the world. Of course, the probability of such a development of events at the moment, if not zero, is very close to this indicator. However, Sharapova makes it clear that she still loves tennis. Perhaps at some point she will follow the example of Caroline Wozniacki, who recently returned to the circuit after the birth of two children, after a hiatus without official games for more than three and a half years.

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In early August, Maria Sharapova visited Canada to attend the conference on Gender Equality in Sport. Maria also decided to visit the JC Ferrero-Equelite academy, owned and operated by Juan Carlos Ferrero, former tennis player and coach of world number one Carlos Alcaraz.

María ran into Alcaraz and took a nice photo with him. Carlos, 20, was impressed by the encounter.

“I watched a lot of Sharapova matches. She was an excellent tennis player, one of the best in the world. And she surprised me because I didn’t expect her to be here in Toronto. I saw her in the elevator and it was like this: is that Maria or not? Do you know what I mean? But it was great to meet her and find out that she was doing well. And a talk, it was very nice, ”Alcaraz shared his impressions.

Carlos Alcaraz and Maria Sharapova

Photo: Social networks JC FERRERO-EQUELITE

And yet, Sharapova’s visit to Canada was mainly for non-tennis reasons. What cannot be said about Maria’s appearance at the US Open 2023. The Russian visited the Arthur Ashe Stadium in New York in the company of her former agent Max Eisenbud. Sharapova signed autographs for fans and, during an informal conversation with Eisenbad, she suddenly spoke of tennis nostalgia.

Sharapova: Do you miss the competition? Eisenbad: I miss the way you play tournaments. Sharapova: Oh, it’s not. Eisenbad: This is true. Sharapova: No, I don’t miss the competition. Eisenbad: maybe you’ll come back and we’ll try again. You can do it. Sharapova: (laughs).

On social networks, María published a photograph in which she walks the field of the stadium where the US Open will soon begin. Maybe at the time she was remembering how she won the title here in 2006. Or maybe deep down I thought it would be nice to play at least one more time on this hard surface in front of a New York crowd. In her last match at the US Open in 2019, María lost without a chance to Serena Williams (1-6, 1-6). Not the best “final word” in this tournament.

Maria Sharapova at the US Open 2023

Photo: From the personal archive of Maria Sharapova.

Sharapova responded to Eisenbad that she did not miss the competition. This was very disappointing for the agent, as Marie’s return to the tour would have been her dream come true. Of course, if she decided to use her services at the same time. Sharapova is an order of magnitude ahead of all active tennis players in terms of the number of subscribers on social media. Any appearance of her on the pitch in an official match would be accompanied by quite a stir.

Canadian Eugenie Bouchard has never won a TBSH, she was not the first racket in the world and only spent one season at the highest level in 2014, when she reached the Wimbledon final, as well as the semifinals of the Australian Open and Roland Garros. . But even this, combined with an attractive appearance, was enough to gain popularity and long-term endorsement contracts: Eugenia’s audience on social networks is larger than that of the current top three rackets in the world, Iga Sviontek, Arina Sobolenko and Jessica Pégula. set. Bouchard is currently outside the top 200 of the WTA rankings, but each of her rare appearances on court (often unsuccessful) attracts a great deal of attention.

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What can we say about Sharapova, who is much more popular and is called Bouchard? Of course, Maria is definitely not coming back just “for the sake of coming back”. She probably told Eisenbud in all seriousness that she didn’t miss tennis tournaments. Maria probably has some kind of nostalgia, but at the moment she is not old enough to drop everything and focus only on tennis.

Although Sharapova remains in good shape. Before traveling to New York, he showed his subscribers a cycle of his training.

“Strength work is not easy for me, but it is very important,” Sharapova captioned the photo after a grueling workout.

Maria Sharapova after training

Photo: From the personal archive of Maria Sharapova.

Maria then posted a photo of a vegan salad plate.

“I can’t promise that New York will look as healthy,” Sharapova said before traveling to the US Open.

Sharapova constantly practices physical activity and follows a diet. She will appear in front of a huge audience on the court. Just not in official matches. In February 2024, Maria will participate in a pickleball tournament (a sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and table tennis). The Pickleball Slam will take place in Hollywood. It will be broadcast on ESPN. Maria will play along with John McEnroe. Her rivals will be the legendary Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf.

Maria Sharapova, John McEnroe, Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf will play in Pickleball Slam

Photo: Social networks The Pickleball Slam

In the United States, pickleball is growing in popularity, and such a well-known list of tournament participants and broadcast on a major channel ensures that the tournament will attract wide attention. Yes, this is an exhibition contest. But the prize fund for such an event is solid – $1 million. No one is going to play carelessly.

Sharapova often trains with McEnroe, encouraging teamwork with a partner. Agassi and Graf do the same, although it is easier for them in this sense, since they are husband and wife. Steffi and Andre have 30 Grand Slam victories for two (mainly Graf’s credit: 22 titles), Maria and John: 12.

However, Sharapova is the youngest entrant in the competition and has just finished her career. McEnroe, 64, is the oldest, but John takes the field regularly in exhibition games and remains in excellent shape. He at least looks thinner than Agassi, 53, who has run a bit and put on a bit more weight. So it remains to be seen which pairing from the pickleball tournament should be considered the favourites.

John McEnroe and Maria Sharapova

Photo: From the personal archive of Maria Sharapova.

Waiting for Sharapova’s return to the WTA circuit is not yet necessary. Maria is already 36 years old. The same aforementioned returning Wozniacki is three years younger, which for women’s tennis is a big difference. Everything is going well in Maria’s life after the end of her career. She is raising a child and is happy in a relationship with Gilks. In material terms there are no problems either.

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Sharapova’s net worth is currently estimated at about $196 million, an amount that increases by at least a couple of tens of millions every year. Sharapova invests well. He recently acquired shares in Public.com and cryptocurrency startup MoonPay, and won a seat on the board of directors of fashion company Moncler Group. Maria continues to benefit from old investments in the startups Therabody and Tonal, she collaborates with the brands Nike and Evian. According to Forbes, she earns more than 2 million dollars a month.

If Sharapova ever decides to return to the court in official matches, definitely not for money. Maria she should feel an overwhelming nostalgia for the old days, when she had to fight for victory in every match. Attending the Toronto Masters and US Open, as well as the upcoming pickleball tournament with tennis legends, could theoretically increase the desire to return. Many would like to see Sharapova in the game again, but Maria will make a decision based solely on her own feelings and interests.

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.
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