Maria Sharapova vows not to take easy route and retire, saying: I still have a lot of passion
It was a sad Wimbledon exit for Maria Sharapova as the former champion retired from her first-round match against Pauline Parmentier, but the Russian has vowed to fight on.
It has been a difficult year so far for Sharapova as she has struggled with a shoulder injury and underwent a small procedure in February.
She only returned to action in June and her clash against Frenchwoman Parmentier was only her third since the surgery.
The 2014 champion started pretty well as she won the opening set and then found herself serving for the match at 5-3 in the second only to then lose her way completely.
She eventually threw in the towel when she was down 4-6, 7-6 (7-4), 5-0.
“It’s very rare that I withdraw from a match in the middle,” the 32-year-old said. “I got myself to a good enough place to be part of this event, not be out of the draw. I don’t want to put anyone in that position. I’m here to play. Next time I come here, I want to feel great. I want to do what I’m meant to be doing at the level I believe I can.”
More questions are being raised about her future in tennis, but Sharapova is determined to continue playing.
“I’m still proud that I’m here. This is not the easy way,” she said. “I think the easy way would be just for me to maybe do other things because I’ve set up the opportunities for myself.
“I’ve never taken the easy route. I’ve always worked, committed, focused. Like I said, these moments are hard, but I love what I do. I still have a lot of passion for it.”
More from Tennis365:
The 18 players to finish as ATP year-end No 1 as Novak Djokovic extends his amazing record
There have been 28 players who have reached the pinnacle of the ATP Rankings, with five currently active.
Carlos Alcaraz’s pre-season schedule: Key dates ahead of 2024 Australian Open revealed
Here are Carlos Alcaraz’s plans ahead of the 2024 Australian Open.
‘Style icon’ Jannik Sinner’s big sponsors – A $158m Nike deal, Gucci’s statement of intent and more
Which brands are sponsoring rising star and “style icon” Jannik Sinner?
‘Novak Djokovic has separated himself from everybody based on the eye test and numbers’
A coaching legend feels two factors make Novak Djokovic the GOAT and discussed the Serb’s hunger.
‘Vulnerable Rafael Nadal is not a contender to win a Grand Slam in comeback’, claims coaching great
A coaching legend does not expect Rafael Nadal to add to his Grand Slam tally.
Carlos Alcaraz makes admission about Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal fans supporting him against Novak Djokovic
Carlos Alcaraz has discussed receiving extra support when he faces Novak Djokovic.
Jessica Pegula on Serena Williams’ retirement opening up the field, Coco Gauff’s Gen Z humour and more
“With Serena being out, it’s different,” says Pegula as she also joked about Gauff being “very Gen Z”.
Nick Kyrgios tells Piers Morgan ‘sometimes you are a bit of d***’ in interview teaser
It’s Nick Kyrgios v Piers Morgan in an interview that will no doubt deliver plenty of talking points.
Novak Djokovic fans not happy as world No 1 misses out on award nominations
Novak Djokovic is a notable absentee for the 2023 ATP Awards for sportsmanship.