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Celebrity biographies

Maria Sharapova
On the 19th of April 1987 a new tennis star was born in Nyagan (Russia). At the age of four Maria picked up a racket and started playing tennis.

In 1992 Maria was spotted at a Exhibition Tournament in Moscow by tennis legend Martina Navratilova who recommends her Nick Bollettieri's Tennis Academy in Bradenton (Florida/USA). Maria and her father Yuri Sharapova decided to follow Martina's advise and moved in 1995 to Miami (USA), and joined the Bollettieri's Academy. These where hard times for the young Maria, wich started a two-year separation from her mother who was left-behind in Russia because of visa restrictions and the family's financial situation.

By following her dream, to become an ultimate tennis star, she sacrificed a lot of things. She barely saw her father for one year.

On her 14th Birthday Maria turned professional. Off court she develops interests in reading, fashion, dancing, stampcollecting and watching movies - her favourite movie is Pearl Harbor. In the year 2002 she reaches the final of the Junior Australian Open, and enters the WTA world rankings at Number 532. At the end of the year she rushes the rankings at No.186!

Maria just kept on rising in the rankings, and in 2003 she made one's first appearance in the Australian Open and qualifies for the French Open. She also won her first titles at the WTA tour in Japan and Quebec. She ended the year 2003 ranked 32. 2004 is the year of Maria Sharapova, the 6ft tall Russian beauty reached the third round of the Australian Open where she sadly lost from another russian, Anastasia Myskina. A few months later Maria was the shining star at Wimbledon. She shown Serena Williams her Russian power, and won Wimbledon (6-1, 6-4).

Maria is ranked 9 on the WTA World rankings and within a few years she could be No.1.

• Residence: Bradenton, Florida, USA
• Date of Birth: April 19, 1987
• Birthplace: Nyagan, Russia (Siberian Region)
• Height: 6' (1.83 m)
• Weight: 130 lbs. (59 kg)
• Plays: Right-handed

• Racquet: Prince More Attack
• Clothing Sponsor: Nike

Carreer Highlights

2004 - Birmingham
2004 - Seoul (Korea Open)
2004 - Wimbledon
2004 - WTA Tour Championships
2004 - Tokyo (Japan Open)
2003 - Tokyo (Japan Open)
2003 - Quebec City
2002 - ITF/Gunma-JPN
2002 - ITF/Vancouver-CAN
2002 - ITF/Peachtree City-USA
2004 - Beijing
2004 - Memphis
2004 - Philadelphia
2004 - Zurich (Swisscom Challenge)
2003 - Birmingham
2003 - Luxembourg
2004 - Roland Garros
2004 - San Diego
2003 - Shanghai

2004 - Birmingham (w/Kirilenko)
2003 - Tokyo [Japan Open] (w/Tanasugarn)
2003 - Luxembourg (w/Tanasugarn)
2004 - Memphis (w/Zvonareva)







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