Less than a month ago we discussed the topic “Is it ova for Maria Sharapova?” and the tennis star has now put an end to all the speculations about where her career was heading — she’s announced retirement. The news doesn’t come as a surprise, obviously, and the timing is not surprising either, still, my first reaction was “no way”.
Despite her ongoing struggles to get back to her desired level of tennis, I still believed that Sharapova’s fighting spirit would win over and that she would miraculously recover. That has not happened. It’s over. The end is here. And in this case we definitely can’t expect that the 32-year-old will decide to return to competitive tennis in several years, like a number of top WTA players have done. It’s not her age, but her long struggles with shoulder injuries and her inability to prove herself after the 15-month Meldonium doping ban in 2016, it is highly unlikely that we’ll ever see Sharapova back on the court.
By posting one of her childhood tennis photos, Sharapova looked back on her career in a short statement:
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.
At the young age of 17 the Russian won her first major title and she completed the Career Slam by winning Roland Garros 2012. She won a total of 36 titles, her last one being the 2017 Tianjin Open, and she spent 21 weeks at the No.1 ranking. Sadly, she’s ending her career ranked as low as No.373.
On-court glamour is definitely one of the things that Nike-sponsored Sharapova will stay remembered for as well. Her last tennis look was this super elegant red Nike Spring Maria Dress from her last match, a straight-set loss to Croatia’s Donna Vekic in the first round of the Australian Open.