Five-time Grand Slam winner, Maria Sharapova, aged 32, has bid adieu to her long-standing beau – Tennis. After a professional career that spanned around 16 years, Sharapova has decided it is time to step into retirement. She broke the news through a column she wrote for Vanity Fair and Vogue.
Though she has lived most of her life in the United States, she represented Russia in all the tournaments as she is of Russian ethnicity. In 1994, when she was 7, the family moved to Florida, and she enrolled at the Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy to receive her training. She made her WTA debut in 2002 at the Pacific Life Open. The world-famous star is one of the richest female athletes in history, having earned millions both on the court as well as off the court endorsements. She has represented Nike, Canon, Cole Haan and Gatorade, among others.
Here’s what she wrote on Twitter after news of her retirement broke, “Tennis showed me the world – and it showed me what I was made of. It’s how I tested myself and how I measured my growth. And so in whatever I might choose for my next chapter, my next mountain, I’ll still be pushing. I’ll still be climbing. I’ll still be growing”.
A Decorated Career
Sharapova sky rocketed up the tennis rankings with a Wimbledon title in 2004 when she was just 17. This kick-started her glorious career which was crowned with two French Open titles, one each in Australia and US, five Grand Slams and a silver medal in London 2012. She went on to amass a total of 36 single titles and three doubles titles. She is also a former world number one and topped the table for 21 weeks; her career ended at number 373. She has impressive win-loss numbers, 645 – 171.
“Looking back now, I realize that tennis has been my mountain. My path has been filled with valleys and detours, but the views from its peak were incredible”, this is what she had to say about her glorious career.
The Final Matches
Sharapova has been dealing with severe on and off shoulder problems for the past decade, and this has cost her titles and finals; she could not put up her best performance. This has also caused her to move out of the scene multiple times for treatment and recovery. Moreover, after failing the dope test in the 2016 Australian Open, she served a 15-month ban which robbed her crucial days of her career post which she had reached just one major quarterfinal. The farewell must have been very painful as she called it quits after losing four consecutive Grand Slam matches.