Sharapova not worried yet about Wimbledon wild card
Maria Sharapova is not yet worried about whether she will be awarded a wild card for Wimbledon following her doping ban.
After moving into the second round of the Madrid Open on Sunday, Sharapova said it’s too early to think about the July tournament.
“I mean, look, I would love to be in a position to compete in that event,” she said. “It’s very meaningful to me. But it’s just too far down the line right now.”
Sharapova defeated Mirjana Lucic-Baroni of Croatia in three sets for her fourth victory since serving a 15month ban for testing positive for meldonium at last year’s Australian Open. She was eliminated in the semifinals in Stuttgart last month in her first tournament since the ban.
“I feel like I’m like a brokenrecord player, but these tournaments are really important,” Sharapova said. “The match play that I have, getting myself in these situations, getting out of them, will ultimately help me for those big events whether I’m in there or not.”
Sharapova, who is also expected to play in Rome later this month, has been playing on wild-card entries because she lost her ranking following the doping suspension.
The decision on her wild card for Wimbledon may not come until June 20, according to tournament officials. The five-time Grand Slam champion and former top-ranked player will know on May 16 if she will be able to compete on a wild card in the French Open, which starts May 22.
A win in the second round in Madrid against Canadian Eugenie Bouchard, one of the most outspoken players against Sharapova’s return to tennis, could be enough to let the Russian qualify for Wimbledon on points, without needing a wild card. Bouchard, who called Sharapova “a cheater” and said she should be banned for life from tennis, was a finalist in Wimbledon in 2014. Sharapova won the 2004 title in Wimbledon.
Sharapova said playing as many matches as possible is the most important thing for her at the moment.