Maria Sharapova Given US Open Wild Card - UBITENNIS
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Maria Sharapova Given US Open Wild Card

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Maria Sharapova (zimbio.com)

Maria Sharapova is set to play in her first grand slam tournament since returning from a doping ban after receiving a wild card for the upcoming US Open.

 

The former world No.1 hasn’t played in a major tournament since the 2016 Australian Open after missing 15 months of the tour for failing a drugs test. Returning to competitive tennis in April, Sharapova was unable to participate in the French Open after officials declined to give her a pass into their tournament. The president of the French Tennis Federation, Bernard Giudicelli, said his decision was made ‘to protect the game.’ She later missed Wimbledon due to injury.

Sharapova, who won the US Open back in 2006, had only been able to play in one tournament since June due to injury. She has already withdrawn from Stanford, Montreal and Cincinnati with a left forearm injury. Hampering her preparations for the final major of the season.

“I arrived in Cincinnati eager to play. However, following the doctor’s advice on-site, as a precaution for the U.S. Open, I am unfortunately withdrawing from the tournament with the left forearm injury I sustained in Stanford.” The Russian said earlier in the week.

The 30-year-old currently has a win-loss record of 32-9 at Flushing Meadows. Besides being the champion in 2006, she is also a three-time semifinalist.

A total of eight wild cards has been awarded for the main draw. Five of those are American, including former junior world No.1 Taylor Townsend, USTA under 18s champion Sofia Kenin and current US Open junior champion Kayla Day.

France’s Amandine Hesse has also been given a pass into the draw. The USTA and French Tennis Association has a reciprocal agreement to allow a wild card for one french player. The same applies to Australia, who is yet to nominate their entry.

Young guns dominate male entries

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In the men’s draw, every wild card entry is below the age of 25. Taylor Fritz has been granted a chance of winning his first main draw match in a grand slam tournament. The world No.120 scored his first top-10 scalp over Marin Cilic earlier this year.

Former junior grand slam champions Bjorn Fratangelo and Tommy Paul have also been given wild cards. Paul, who won the 2017 US Open wild card challenge, will play in his first major main draw since the 2015 US Open and the second of his career. Meanwhile, Fratangelo will feature in his eighth. Also joining them will be Christopher Eubanks, Thai-Son Kwiatkowski and Patrick Kypson.

The Australian and French representatives are both under the age of 19. Alex de Minaur will play in his third major tournament of the season. Last month the Australian won his first pro title in singles at a Futures event in Portugal and has already reached the final at two Challenger events. France’s Geoffrey Blancaneaux is currently ranked outside the top 300 and is best known for defeating Félix Auger-Aliassime in the boys French Open final last year.

At this year’s US Open, first round losers will take home a minimum of $50,000 in prize money.

Complete list of US Open wild cards

Women’s main draw
Maria Sharapova RUS
Taylor Townsend USA
Kayla Day USA
Sofia Kenin USA
Ashley Kratzer USA
Brienne Minor USA
Amandine Hesse FRA
Australian wild card – TBC

Women’s qualifying draw (all American)
Usue Arconada (18, College Park, Md.)
Kelly Chen (18, Cerritos, Calif.)
Francesca Di Lorenzo (20, New Albany, Ohio)
Victoria Duval (21, Bradenton, Fla.)
Ashley Lahey (17, Hawthorne, Calif.)
Ann Li (17, Devon, Pa.)
Claire Liu (17, Thousand Oaks, Calif.)
Whitney Osuigwe (15, Bradenton, Fla.)
Katerina Stewart (20, Miami)

Men’s main draw
Taylor Fritz USA
Bjorn Fratangelo USA
Christopher Eubanks USA
Thai-Son Kwiatkowski USA
Patrick Kypson USA
Tommy Paul USA
Geoffrey Blancaneaux FRA
Alex de Minaur AUS

Men’s qualifying (all American)
William Blumberg (19, Greenwich, Conn.)
Marcos Giron (24, Thousand Oaks, Calif.)
Christian Harrison (Shreveport, La.)
Evan King (Chicago)
Bradley Klahn (Poway, Calif.)
Austin Krajicek (27, Brandon, Fla.)
Daniel Nguyen (Long Beach, Calif.)
Raymond Sarmiento (25, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.)
JJ Wolf (19, Cincinnati)

 

Grand Slam

(VIDEO EXCLUSIVE) The Wimbledon Clash Between Djokovic And Sinner Could Have Been Better

It was an epic five-set clash but imagine how better the match would have been if both were playing well at the same time…

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Hall of Famer Steve Flink and Ubitennis’ Ubaldo Scanagatta analyse the dramatic events that unfolded on Tuesday at Wimbledon.

 

Top seed Novak Djokovic staged an epic comeback to oust Jannik Sinner in a match of two halves. Meanwhile, Cameron Norrie brought delight to the British fans.

On the other side of the draw, how will Rafael Nadal fair against the in-form Taylor Fritz? The Spaniard recently sidestepped a question about a potential new injury. 

As for the women’s draw, Ons Jabeur made history by becoming the first Arab player to reach a major quarter-final. She will next play 34-year-old mum-of-two Tatjana Maria who had never been beyond the third round of a major until now. 

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The Wimbledon Naughty List: Which Players Have Been Fined And What For?

Ubitennis takes a look at who has been hit with a penalty and more importantly why.

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Nick Kyrgios might be the player everybody’s talking about due to his behavior but few realize that he is one of 19 to be hit with a financial penalty during the first week of Wimbledon.

In fact, more than $75,000 worth of fines has already been issued during the first week of the championships. According to official data, more than three times as many men have committed an offense than women. Although interestingly it is only two female players who have been punished for receiving coaching and nobody in the men’s draw.

Australia’s Kyrgios leads the leaderboard for the biggest fine after what has been a controversial past few days. In his first round match, he argued with the umpire and spat in front of some people in the crowd who he said were ‘disrespecting him.’ Resulting in him being hit with a $10,000 penalty. He later said during his press conference that he was tired of being verbally abused by some fans watching him play.

 

Then on Saturday in a dramatic clash with Stefanos Tsitsipas he argued once again with officials, got a warning for swearing and at one stage called for his opponent to be defaulted for hitting a ball into the stands. 

“Why would I need to apologize? I’m getting fined for it. Because I got — I always get fined. I’m very keen to see what he will get after today.” Kyrgios said following his third round win. 

Kyrgios has been fined another $4000 for his antics and Tsitsipas has to pay $10,000 for his behavior. The relationship between the two took another dramatic turn after the match when the Greek accused his peer of bullying during an explosive press conference

After Kyrgios, America’s Reilly Opelka was docked $5000 for swearing. The value of the fine is an interesting one when three other players have also been fined for the same offense but they only have to pay $3000. The difference could be due to repeated swearing during the match.

The majority of the men’s fInes are for either unsportsmanlike conduct or audible obscenities. The only exception is Benoit Paire who was fined $2500 for equipment abuse.

As for the ladies’ draw, Ukraine’s Lesia Tsurenko received the biggest fine ($4500) for coaching. Former world No.1 Garbine Muguruza was another player to be published for her actions.

Here is a breakdown of the fines issued between Day 1 and Day 6 of the championships. 

WOMEN

  • Daria Saville AUS (round one) $4000 – EQUIPMENT ABUSE
  • Lesia Tsurenko UKR (round two) $4500 – COACHING
  • Garbine Mugurza ESP (round 2) $3500 – COACHING
  • Harriet Dart GBR (round 2) $4000 – EQUIPMENT ABUSE

MEN

  • Fernando verdasco ESP (round one) $3000 – AUDIBLE OBSCENITY
  • Adrian Mannarino FRA (round one) $3000 – UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
  • Stan Wawrinka SWI (round one) $3000 – UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
  • Yoshihito Nishioka JPA (round one) $3000 – UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
  • Nick Kyrgios AUS (round one) $10,000 – UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
  • Pedro Martinez ESP (round one) $3000 – UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
  • Diego Schwartzman ARG (round one) $3000 – AUDIBLE OBSCENITY
  • Lukas Klein SVK (round one) $3000 –  UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
  • Reilly Opelka USA (round two) $5000 – AUDIBLE OBSCENITY
  • Benoit Paire (round one) $2500 – EQUIPMENT ABUSE
  • Jiri Vesely CZE (round two) $3000 – UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
  • Alejandro Davidovich-Fokina ESP (round two) $3000 – AUDIBLE OBSCENITY
  • Denis Shapovalov CAN (round 2) £3000 – UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT
  • Nick Kyrgios (round 3) $4000 – AUDIBLE OBSCENITY
  • Stefanos Tsitsipas (round 3) $10,000 – UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT

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Grand Slam

(VIDEO) Day 7 at Wimbledon: Jannik Sinner Stuns Alcaraz, Djokovic Fights Back

Ubitennis found Ubaldo Scanagatta reflects on all the action that took place on Sunday with renowned commentator Steve Flink.

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Jannik Sinner joins a small group of only six Italian men to have reached the last eight at SW19. The 20-year-old ousted the fierce Carlos Alcaraz in four sets. Another four-set triumph was Djokovic’s win over Dutch walk card Tim Van Rijthoven.

 

Hall of Famer Flink joins Ubitennis to give his view on the events that have taken place. 

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