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Frustrating Australian Open all over for Sharapova

By Ian Ransom MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Picking up her racquet bag and marching straight out of Rod Laver Arena without a nod or a wave, Maria Sharapova's abrupt exit after her fourth-round loss to Dominika Cibulkova on Monday spoke volumes of her disdain for a forgettable Australian Open. After a long layoff and with doubts surrounding the state of her troublesome right shoulder, the 26-year-old entered the tournament with only four matches of preparation and with rust caked on so thick she could not shake it off.

Tennis: Sochi-bound Sharapova rebuffs gay question

Four-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova said Saturday she can't wait to get to Sochi for the Winter Olympics, but refused to be drawn on Russia's controversial gay propaganda laws. The Russian starlet will return to her roots at the Games in February, working for US broadcaster NBC, although she will not be commentating. Instead, she will bring a unique insight to Russia's first Winter Games, having lived in Sochi when she was a child and with family and friends still living in the area.

Tennis: Sharapova admits she must improve

Russian third seed Maria Sharapova admitted Saturday she must improve to stay in the Australian Open after battling through another tough match against France's Alize Cornet. The four-time Grand Slam champion came out on top 6-1, 7-6 (8/6) in one hour 51 minutes, but her killer instinct deserted her in the second set when she failed to serve out for victory, forcing a tiebreak.

Sharapova advances but still searching for form

By Ian Ransom MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Maria Sharapova continued her erratic Australian Open campaign with a scratchy 6-1 7-6 (8-6) win over Alize Cornet that put her into the last 16 on Saturday but also sent her straight to the practice court in search of some sorely needed form.

Tennis: Sharapova works hard to make last 16

Russian third seed Maria Sharapova battled into the Australian Open fourth round on Saturday with a hard-fought, straight-sets win over France's Alize Cornet. The four-time Grand Slam champion came through her match on Rod Laver Arena 6-1, 7-6 (8/6) in one hour 51 minutes, but Sharapova's killer instinct deserted her in the second set when she failed to serve out for the victory, forcing a tiebreak.

Tennis: Sharapova hails training after surviving scare

Russian star Maria Sharapova said Thursday her intense training following a shoulder injury had paid off after surviving a big scare against Karin Knapp in intense heat at the Australian Open. The third seed battled through temperatures of up to 42 Celsius (107.6 Fahrenheit) and a third set lasting nearly two hours to overcome the 44th-ranked Italian 6-3, 4-6, 10-8 to make the third round. The four-time Grand Slam champion was forced to stay on court for three hours 28 minutes as she seeks her first major title since the French Open in 2012.

Frazzled Sharapova fumes over murky heat policy

By Ian Ransom MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Maria Sharapova criticized Australian Open organizers for a lack of transparency over their 'extreme heat policy' when the Russian was left toiling on court for nearly an hour after organizers had invoked an official halt on Thursday. Sharapova and her opponent Karin Knapp of Italy slugged it out in 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) heat at Rod Laver Arena for three-and-a-half hours before the Russian prevailed 6-3 4-6 10-8 in their marathon second round encounter.

Tennis: Sharapova hails training after surviving scare

Russian star Maria Sharapova said Thursday her intense training after shoulder surgery had paid off after surviving a big scare against Karin Knapp in intense heat at the Australian Open. The third seed battled through temperatures of up to 42 Celsius (107.6 Fahrenheit) and a third set lasting nearly two hours to overcome the 44th-ranked Italian 6-3, 4-6, 10-8 to make the third round. The four-time Grand Slam champion was forced to stay on court for three hours 28 minutes as she seeks her first major title since the French Open in 2012.

Tennis: Sharapova hails training after surviving scare

Russian star Maria Sharapova said Thursday her intense training after shoulder surgery had paid off after surviving a big scare against Karin Knapp in intense heat at the Australian Open. The third seed battled through temperatures of up to 42 Celsius (107.6 Fahrenheit) and a third set lasting nearly two hours to overcome the 44th-ranked Italian 6-3, 4-6, 10-8 to make the third round. The four-time Grand Slam champion was forced to stay on court for three hours 28 minutes as she seeks her first major title since the French Open in 2012.

Tennis: Sharapova survives scare to stay alive

Russian star Maria Sharapova survived a major scare before dousing the challenge of Italy's Karin Knapp in intense heat to reach the Australian Open third round Thursday. The third seed battled through temperatures of up to 42 Celsius (107.6 Fahrenheit) and a third set lasting nearly two hours to overcome the 44th-ranked Knapp 6-3, 4-6, 10-8. The four-time Grand Slam champion was forced to stay on court for three hours 28 minutes as she seeks her first major title since the French Open in 2012.
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