Strewth! Sharapova could miss Aussie Open!
Originally published on: 26/02/10 15:06
World No.9 Maria Sharapova has revealed she may not be fit enough to defend her Australian Open title in January.
The 21-year-old Russian has confirmed she underwent arthroscopic surgery on her troublesome right shoulder in mid-October and that she may not be in match-shape in time for the Melbourne slam which begins on January 19.
Sharapova has been missing from the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour since August when she withdrew from the Rogers Cup in Montreal.
She was hoping a short rest from competitive tennis would help clear up her shoulder pain, but in the autumn decided surgery was the best option.
The good news for MaSha fans is that she says the injury that has dogged her for so long is now history and its just a matter of time before she will be grunting her way back to the top of the rankings.
The bad news is that those hoping to see her in action at Januarys JB Group Classic exhibition in Hong Kong will have their hopes dashed as she has pulled out of the Aussie Open warm-up event.
“Unfortunately after my 10 weeks of shoulder rehab, I started hitting and serving again and I still felt the same exact pain that I have had in my shoulder since March, Sharapova said on her official website..
“I am trying to do everything possible to be ready for Australia, but I have promised my doctors, coach and family that I will not rush back,” she admitted.
“Since I only started practising 16 days ago, I have only been able to practice so many hours at a time which is why I don’t feel like I am ready to compete at a high level right now and this is why I need to pull out of the exhibition in Hong Kong.
“But the great news is that we have taken care of the problem that has been bothering me so much over the last couple of years, and now is the time to get into what I call ‘match shape’.
I know my shoulder will be 100 percent by Australia, I just need to see if I have enough tennis training to be ready for that level.”
Meanwhile, a tournament official has confirmed that security will be tightened ahead of next week’s ATP Chennai Open in India following recent terrorist attacks in Mumbai.
“In the wake of the Mumbai events and the various travel advisories put out by countries, one is being careful in terms of security,” the official told the Reuters news agency.
World No.5 Nikolay Davydenko will be top seed at the $450,000 event.