Maria Sharapova proved to be the dominant one in her match today against Dominika Cibulkova, beating her 6-1, 6-1. Her win earns her a spot in the Wimbledon semifinals, where she will meet Sabine Lisicki of Germany. Lisicki beat Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli 6-4, 6-7, 6-1.
Rain hit Wimbledon today, but it certainly didn’t put a damper on Sharapova. It was a quick match at Centre Court, lasting a little over an hour. It was the first time Maria played under the Wimbledon roof, and obviously had no effect on her. The Russian was just too much for the Slovakian.
At a news conference after the match, Sharapova said:
“It’s great, the fact that I’ve had the experience of being in these stages. But I haven’t been for a while (at Wimbledon), so it’s a nice and refreshing feeling to have. To be in the semis of Wimbledon is a bonus. To come back and play tennis after a big injury, I was just happy to be back on court.”
She was a 17-year-old teenager when she last won the Wimbledon title, beating Serena Williams back in 2004. With the Williams sisters out, Sharapova is the heavy favorite and only former champion left in the draw. Can she do it? I hope so, it’s been a long time coming and I’ll be rooting her on, that’s for sure!
Her fiance, New Jersey Nets player Sasha Vujacic, has accompanied her to tourneys since his season has wrapped. He has seen her advance to the semifinals of the French Open and now Wimbledon. Of his support, she says, “It obviously helps that he’s an athlete and understands the perspective and the mind-set going into matches and being an athlete. It’s quite different to many other things in life and careers.”
Congrats, Maria! Let’s hope for a win on Thursday! Grunt, grunt….
Photos: www.wenn.com/Aaron Gilbert