WTA Tour

Sharapova knocked out in Moscow

2017-10-17 17:55
Maria Sharapova (Getty)

Moscow - Five-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova crashed out in the first round of the Kremlin Cup in Moscow on Tuesday, losing in straight sets to Slovakia's Magdalena Rybarikova.

Rybarikova, seeded eighth, overcame the former world number one 7-6 (7/3), 6-4 in one hour, 53 minutes to level her head-to-head record with Sharapova at one all.

Sharapova was appearing in front of her home fans just 48 hours after claiming the Tianjin Open, her first title since returning in April from a 15-month doping ban.

The Kremlin Cup was the world number 57's eighth wildcard invitation since testing positive for the banned substance meldonium in early 2016.

"I fought hard today as I really wanted to show my best in Moscow after a 10-year break," the 30-year-old said.

"If it hadn't been the Kremlin Cup I probably wouldn't have come to play in any other event after playing five matches in five days in China.

"Physically I felt I was well but it seems that it wasn't enough to win today.

"She (Rybarikova) played really intelligent tennis. She played skilfully, running for every single ball."

The pair traded breaks late in the opening set, which Bratislava resident Rybarikova took in a tiebreak after one hour, seven minutes on court.

The second set was almost a carbon copy of the first, with Rybarikova breaking in the 10th game to take the set and the match.

"It was very difficult for me, because it felt like the Fed Cup. It's absolutely normal, Maria is a huge superstar here and she's a real champion," said Rybarikova, who is seeking her fifth career WTA title this week.

"I'm happy that I went through this match, and it's good for my confidence. I'm very happy with that," she added.

Read more on:    wta tour  |  kremlin cup  |  maria sharapova  |  tennis
NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Vote

Which is your favourite Grand Slam of the year?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.