Maria Sharapova denied French Open wildcard

Beth Cruz
May 17, 2017

Maria Sharapova shrugged off a sluggish opening to progress to the second round of the WTA Internazionali BNL d'Italia with a win over Christina McHale on the eve of learning her French Open fate.

The decision was announced by the FFT on Facebook Live shortly before Sharapova was due to play her second round at the Italian Open in Rome. Sharapova went on to the Mutua Madrid Open, where she won the title in 2014.

The Russian former world No. 1, given a wildcard to compete in Rome after returning from a 15-month doping ban, dropped serve three times in a scrappy opening set, but won 6-4, 6-2 to reach round two.

Sharapova had needed to reach the semi-finals in Rome to avoid needing a wildcard for the Wimbledon main draw.

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed. "I got straight to her answering machine three times and I left her a message", he said. "They might be disappointed, she might be very disappointed, but it´s my responsibility, my mission, to protect the high standards of the game".

With her ranking at 211 in the world, Sharapova does not qualify directly for the top tournaments.

She is expected to hear from Roland Garros on Tuesday about the status of her wild card request.

"I decided not to give Maria Sharapova a wild card. I will be focused on my match, as I'm playing tomorrow", Sharapova said, adding that she would accept a qualifying wildcard.

She's using another wild card to play in the Italian Open this week.

Sharapova recently returned from a 15-month doping ban after admitting she had used the banned hormone and metabolic modulator meldonium.

Canada's Eugenie Bouchard also described the Russian as a "cheater" prior to their matchup at the recent Madrid Open.

The French Open draw was already missing one of its biggest stars as the pregnant Serena Williams takes time out before the birth of her first child.

"I read the results of several polls and I could see that about two-thirds were in favour of Maria being granted a wildcard, of course I felt some pressure", he explained.

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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