Maria Sharapova set for wildcard entry in Birmingham’s Aegon Classic: Reports | tennis | Hindustan Times
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Maria Sharapova set for wildcard entry in Birmingham’s Aegon Classic: Reports

Maria Sharapova will receive a wildcard for next month’s Aegon Classic in Birmingham.

tennis Updated: May 10, 2017 11:02 IST
Maria Sharapova
Maria Sharapova crashes out of Madrid Open after losing to Eugenie Bouchard.(AFP)

Former world number one Maria Sharapova will be awarded a wildcard by the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) to play at next month’s Aegon Classic in Birmingham, according to a report in the Times.

Maria Sharapova’s current ranking of 258, after a return from a 15-month doping suspension last month, was too low to merit a direct entry for the grasscourt event and the organisers are looking to give her one of the four available wild cards, the report said.

The 30-year-old Russian last won the Birmingham event in 2005 but her most recent appearance was in 2010.

READ | Eugenie Bouchard stuns Maria Sharapova to set up Kerber clash in Madrid

“We are in the process of deciding which players will receive wild cards for our summer season grass-court tournaments,” an LTA spokesman told the Times.

The five-time grand slam winner Sharapova reached the Stuttgart Grand Prix semi-finals last month in her first tournament since being banned but lost 7-5 2-6 6-4 to Canadian Eugenie Bouchard in the second round of the Madrid Open on Monday.

READ | Maria Sharapova’s Wimbledon fate to be decided on June 20

The tournament is scheduled from June 17-25 at the Edgbaston Priory Club ahead of the Wimbledon, starting on July 3.

Sharapova’s hopes of featuring in this year’s Wimbledon could hinge on a June 20 meeting of tournament organisers unless the Russian finds form in the forthcoming event in Rome.