Maria Sharapova Announced the End of her Career

Ross Houston
February 27, 2020

"In giving my life to tennis, tennis gave me a life", she said.

Tennis superstar Maria Sharapova has announced that she has retired from professional tennis.

Sharapova burst onto the tennis scene at 17 by upsetting Serena Williams to win Wimbledon in 2004.

"I'm new to this, please forgive me".

In an essay written for Vanity Fair and Vogue about her decision to retire, posted online Wednesday, Sharapova asks: "How do you leave behind the only life you've ever known?"

More injury troubles followed before the bombshell announcement of her positive test for meldonium at the 2016 Australian Open - where she fell in the quarter-finals to Williams, her last match before a 15-month suspension.

Sharapova, who last played at the Australian Open last month and lost in the first round to Donna Vekic, has been suffering from injuries related to shoulder and played in just 20 matches since the start of 2019.

"Looking back now, I realise that tennis has been my mountain. My path has been filled with valleys and detours, but the views from its peak were incredible".

But her impact on court was trumped by her profile off it, with the Russian the world's highest-earning female athlete for much of her career.

After moving from Russian Federation to Florida at age 9 to train at the Bollettieri Academy, she made her professional debut just after her 14th birthday in 2001.

"She's such a good player", Williams said of Sharapova after the match.

After that suspension, Sharapova managed to reach only one major quarterfinal.

"There are a couple of sides of me", she said then.

Her last appearance came at the 2020 Australian Open, where she was knocked out in the first round.

"Throughout my career, Is it worth it? was never even a question - in the end, it always was", she wrote. She won the French Open again in 2014. "To me, that doesn't make me sad, that makes me excited". "It's how I tested myself and how I measured my growth", Sharapova tweeted Wednesday.

The all-too-frequent career breaks, gave Sharapova time to establish a confectionary company called Sugarpova, from which some of the proceeds go to the Maria Sharapova Foundation - a charity set up to help victims of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident from which her parents fled.

I'll still be climbing.

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