2014 Maria Sharapova tennis season
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The 2014 Maria Sharapova tennis season officially began on 30 December 2013 with the start of the 2014 WTA Tour. Sharapova began the season, having only played one match since the previous June due to a shoulder injury, at the Brisbane International. After failing to defend her points during the winter and spring hard court season, Sharapova almost dropped out of the Top 10. She rebounded by dominating the clay court season which saw her win Stuttgart, Madrid and the French Open. Her only loss on clay came to a resurgent Ana Ivanovic. She then won her first hard court title since the 2013 BNP Paribas Open at the China Open. Her season ended on 24 October 2014 following her elimination from the round robin stage at the 2014 WTA Finals in Singapore. She ended the year ranked no. 2 behind Serena Williams.
Sharapova at the 2014 Madrid Mutua Open.
|Full name||Maria Sharapova|
|Calendar prize money||$5,156,357|
|Season record||48–13 (78.69%)|
|Year-end ranking||No. 2|
|Ranking change from previous year||2|
|Grand Slam & significant results|
|Last updated on: 7 October 2014.|
Year in detailEdit
Early hard court season and Australian OpenEdit
Sharapova began her season at the Brisbane International, having pulled out of the event in the previous two seasons. Her comeback began with a straightforward 6–3, 6–0 win over Caroline Garcia. She then received a walkover before her second round match with home favourite Ashleigh Barty, with Barty citing a left adductor tear as reason for her withdrawal. In the quarterfinals, Sharapova played world #30 Kaia Kanepi and prevailed in three sets, having lost the opener to the Estonian. Sharapova's run ended in the semifinals with a 6–2, 7–6 (7) defeat to world #1 Serena Williams. The defeat was Sharapova's fourteenth consecutive defeat to Williams, a run stretching back to 2004. Despite the defeat, Sharapova's world ranking climbed slightly to world #3, overtaking Li Na.
Sharapova's next tournament was the first major of the year, the Australian Open, an event she had previously won in 2008. She was seeded third and was defending heavy points from the previous years semifinal, which she lost in straight sets to Li Na. Sharapova began her title bid against American Bethanie Mattek-Sands and prevailed 6–3, 6–4. She then faced Italian Karin Knapp in the second round and ultimately won 6–4, 4–6, 10–8, in a match that lasted for almost three and a half hours. Following the match, the tournament was criticized from some quarters, for allowing the match to continue under the closed roof on Rod Laver Arena, despite play being stopped on all other courts due to the tournaments Extreme Heat policy. Sharapova later played down the complaints stating "I think you just get numb to [the heat], it just doesn't faze you any more. I'm happy – these are the matches that you work for." Next, Sharapova had a much easier time in the third round, defeating French 25th seed Alizé Cornet in straight sets 6–1, 7–6. Her run however came to an end in the fourth round, when she lost in three sets to the Slovakian 20th seed (and eventual finalist) Dominika Cibulková. Sharapova had won the first set 6–3, but the lost the next two sets to be eliminated from the competition. Sharapova's ranking fell two places to world #5 after the tournament.
Paris Open GDF SuezEdit
Following defeat at the Australian Open, Sharapova entered the Premier level Open GDF Suez in Paris as the top seed. Her confectionery venture Sugarpova was one of the tournaments primary sponsors. She began the event with a straightforward 6–0, 6–1 victory over world #31 Daniela Hantuchová, her ninth consecutive win over the Slovak after losing their opening meeting in 2004. She then progressed through the quarterfinals with a 6–2, 6–2 win over Kirsten Flipkens, before losing to compatriot and eventual champion Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the semifinal match. Sharapova had again won the first set, before Pavlyuchenkova came back to win in three, to claim her first career victory over Sharapova. Sharapova's ranking remained steady at world #5 after the event.
BNP Paribas OpenEdit
After not playing during the month of February, Sharapova returned to action at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California. She was the defending champion at the event, having beaten Caroline Wozniacki 6–2, 6–2 in the 2013 final. As the fourth seed, Sharapova received a bye in the first round and thus began her title defence in the second round, facing German world #86 Julia Görges. Sharapova made short work of her opponent, winning 6–1, 6–4. In the third round, Sharapova faced 22-year-old qualifier Camila Giorgi for the first time in her career. Despite being the heavy favourite to progress, Sharapova was stunned by Giorgi in three sets, losing the defence of her title 3–6, 6–4, 5–7. The early defeat proved costly for Sharapova's ranking, which dropped two further places to world #7 after the event.
2014 Sony Open TennisEdit
After her early loss at Indian Wells, Sharapova looked to bounce back at the Sony Open Tennis event in Key Biscayne, Florida. Sharapova entered the tournament having been the beaten finalist on five previous occasions, including the last three editions of the competition, losing against Victoria Azarenka, Agnieszka Radwańska and Serena Williams respectively. Despite her ranking having dropped to #7, she entered the tournament as the fourth seed and again received a bye to the second round. There, Sharapova played her first career meeting with Japan's Kurumi Nara and won in straight sets 6–3, 6–4, to set up a third round match against world #26 Lucie Šafářová. Though Sharapova failed to convert two match points in the second set (and eight overall), she eventually overcame her Czech opponent on her ninth match point, winning 6–4, 6–7, 6–2 to advance to the fourth round. She next faced Kirsten Flipkens, and despite never previously losing a set to her opponent (including at their previous 2014 meeting in Paris), she lost the first set 3–6. However, Sharapova then regrouped and won the following two sets 6–4, 6–1 to advance the quarterfinals. There, Sharapova earned her first top ten victory of the year, seeing off world #8 Petra Kvitová 7–5, 6–1, to set up a semifinal rematch against Serena Williams. However, despite making a strong start, Sharapova once again fell foul of the world #1, losing 6–4, 6–3. The defeat was Sharapova's third semifinal loss of 2014, each to the eventual winner of the tournament. Sharapova again dropped slightly in the rankings to world #9, her lowest position since returning to the top 10 in 2011.
Spring clay court season and French OpenEdit
Porsche Tennis Grand PrixEdit
Sharapova began her clay court season at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart, Germany. She entered the tournament having never previously lost at the event, and as the two-time defending champion following her victories over Victoria Azarenka and Li Na in the 2012 and 2013 finals respectively. Seeded sixth, Sharapova began her campaign facing Lucie Šafářová for the second time in 2014, and their match proved just as dramatic as their previous encounter in Key Biscayne, with Sharapova ultimately prevailing in three hours and twenty four minutes, 7–6, 6–7, 7–6, having previously being two points from defeat in the final set. The second round proved to be far more straightforward for Sharapova, as she beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6–4, 6–3 to avenge her earlier defeat to the Russian in Paris. In the subsequent quarterfinals, Sharapova beat top seed and world #3 Agnieszka Radwańska in straight sets, and then advanced to her third consecutive Stuttgart final by comfortably beating Sara Errani 6–1, 6–2 in the semifinals, setting up a title decider with world #12 Ana Ivanovic. The match was the first final to be contested between the pair since the 2008 Australian Open, won by Sharapova. Ivanovic started the final strong, winning the first set 6–3 and taking a 3–1 lead in the second, however Sharapova then recovered, winning 11 of the remaining 13 games to claim her third consecutive title at Stuttgart with a 3–6, 6–4, 6–1 win. The victory secured Sharapova's first title of the year, and the first since her previous visit to the event. Stuttgart is the first title that Sharapova has ever won on three occasions in her career.
Mutua Madrid OpenEdit
Next, Sharapova traveled to Spain, for the Mutua Madrid Open, a Premier Mandatory event. She entered the tournament as the eighth seed, defending finalist points after her defeat to Serena Williams in the 2013 title decider. Following a comfortable first round victory over Klára Koukalová, Sharapova was forced to rally from a 1–4 deficit in the final set against Christina McHale in the second round, eventually prevailing 6–1, 4–6, 6–4. In the third round, Sharapova continued her dominance over Australian Samantha Stosur, earning a 6–4, 6–3 victory, her twelfth over Stosur in fourteen career meetings. Sharapova was once again involved in a narrow three setter in her quarterfinal match, beating world #2 Li Na 2–6, 7–6, 6–3. She then beat Agnieszka Radwańska 6–1, 6–4 in the semifinal, to earn a berth in the Madrid final for the second time in a row. This time she faced world #5 Simona Halep for the title, but started slowly, losing the first set 6–1. From there however, Sharapova slowly regained her dominance in the game, and eventually came out the victor, earning her first Madrid title and her second overall in 2014 with a 1–6, 6–2, 6–3 victory. Following the match, Sharapova's world ranking recovered slightly back to world #7. She remains unbeaten on clay in 2014 and is currently on an eleven match winning streak.
Internazionali BNL d'ItaliaEdit
Aiming for her third consecutive title, and to keep her unbeaten clay court record alive, Sharapova went to Italy to contest in the Internazionali BNL d'Italia, a Premier 5 tournament. As she entered the tournament as the eighth seed, she had a bye in the first round. Sharapova struggled through her second round match against Monica Puig, coming back from a 2–1 deficit in the first set and a 4–1 deficit in the second to win the match 6–3, 7–5. In the third round, Sharapova faced eleventh seed Ana Ivanovic, who she defeated in Stuttgart. Despite Sharapova winning their last six meetings, she lost to Ivanovic 1–6, 4–6.
Sharapova was seeded seventh at this year French Open. She played Ksenia Pervak, Tsvetana Pironkova and Paula Ormaechea in the opening rounds, and dominated all three matches in straight sets, including a "double bagel" over Ormaechea. In round four Sharapova played Australian 19th seed Samantha Stosur. She dropped the first set and found herself 3–4 down in the second, before improving and winning all nine of the remaining games. In the quarter final, Sharapova faced Garbiñe Muguruza who had knocked out Serena Williams in the second round. Sharapova started slowly, losing the first set 1–6 and being broken in the second set. However, she again made a late comeback and came out the 1–6, 7–5, 6–1 winner, to set up a fourth consecutive French Open semifinal. Here, she played Eugenie Bouchard, the 18th seed. For a third consecutive match, she came from a set down to win the match 4–6 7–5 6–2. In the grand final, her opponent was Romanian 4th seed, and Grand Slam final debutante, Simona Halep. In what was later described as one of the best Grand Slam finals in years, Sharapova claimed the first set 6–4, before losing the second set tiebreak to Halep. Despite struggling early in the third set, Sharapova's experience prevailed and after over three hours, she emerged victorious with a 6–4, 6–7, 6–4 win, claiming her fifth Grand Slam title, and second at the French Open. After the tournament, Sharapova's ranking improved to World #5, and she also claimed top spot in the WTA's "Road to Singapore" leaderboard. Following the early end to her 2013 season, Sharapova additionally only has 101 points to defend until the end of the year.
Sharapova was seeded fifth at this year Wimbledon, defending second round points after her shock defeat to Michelle Larcher de Brito in 2013. She quickly improved on her previous result, with quick wins over local wildcard Samantha Murray and qualifier Timea Bacsinszky. She then continued her strong start over grass-court specialist Alison Riske 6–3, 6–0 to set up a fourth round clash with world #7 Angelique Kerber to whom she lost 6–7 6–4 4–6 after saving six match points in the final set.
US Open Series & US OpenEdit
Sharapova began the 2014 US Open Series at the Rogers Cup, where she gained a top 4 seeding for the first time since the Sony Open in March, by virtue of Li Na's withdrawal from the tournament with a knee injury. Receiving a bye through the first round, Maria opened up her campaign against Garbiñe Muguruza, whom she had defeated in the quarterfinals of Roland Garros earlier in the year. Following a quick start by her opponent, which saw Sharapova fall behind a set and a break, Maria broke back in the fourth game of the second set and won eleven of the last thirteen games to win the match 4–6, 6–3, 6–1. In her third round match, Sharapova faced Muguruza's doubles partner Carla Suárez Navarro. Another slow start saw Sharapova fall into a quick 0–5 deficit in the first set and although she was able to hold and break Suárez Navarro's serve for 2–5, Carla broke to win the first set 2–6. Sharapova was twice a break down in the second set at 0–2 and 1–3 but she broke back both times and leveled the match by winning the set 6–4. The match had been littered with rain delays and the final one of the match saw Sharapova come out to another slow start in the third set, which Sharapova consequently lost 2–6. This was Maria's first loss to Suárez Navarro, tying their head-to-head at one apiece.
Western & Southern OpenEdit
Sharapova next participated at the tournament in Cincinnati, where she was previously the champion in 2011. Sharapova was seeded fifth, and advanced to the quarterfinals with wins over Madison Keys and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. She then earned her third win of 2014 against world #2 Simona Halep in a lengthy three set match. In the semifinals, Sharapova met Ana Ivanovic for the third time in the year. Despite coming back from a set down, Sharapova missed two match points in the final set and went on to lose 2–6, 7–5, 5–7.
Sharapova was seeded 5th at the final Grand Slam of the year. She comfortably dispatched of compatriot Maria Kirilenko in the first round, before advancing again, this time in three sets over Romanian Alexandra Dulgheru. In the third round, Sharapova defeated 26th seed Sabine Lisicki in straight sets to set up a fourth round tie against tenth seed Caroline Wozniacki, but lost there to the eventual finalist, 4–6, 6–2, 2–6.
Asian hard court seasonEdit
After almost a month of inactivity, Sharapova returned to the tour at the inaugural tournament at Wuhan. As the fourth seed, she received a bye in the first round, before facing Svetlana Kuznetsova for the first time in over three years, defeating her compatriot in three sets. Her run at the tournament came to an abrupt end in the next round, when she was stunned by world #61 Timea Bacsinszky in two close sets.
Sharapova next played at the China Open in Beijing, her first return to the event since defeat at the hands of Victoria Azarenka in the 2012 final. She quickly advanced to the quarterfinals without dropping a set, defeating Kaia Kanepi, Elina Svitolina and avenging her Montreal defeat to Carla Suárez Navarro. She then defeated Svetlana Kuznetsova for the second time in two weeks, this time at the loss of only four games, to claim a semifinal berth against Ana Ivanovic. Despite enduring a lengthy final service game that contained three aces and four double faults, Sharapova emerged in straight sets 6–0, 6–4, to tie her 2014 rivalry with Ivanovic at two wins apiece. In the final, Sharapova faced world #3 Petra Kvitová. She was broken in the very first game of the match, but rebounded to claim the first set 6–4. Kvitová then upped her game to claim the second set, but Sharapova rebounded in the final set, claiming a 6–4, 2–6, 6–3 victory and her fourth tournament win of the year. The victory, her first at Beijing, was her first tournament victory on a hard court since Indian Wells in 2013, and her four titles of the year represented her best haul since winning five titles in 2006.
Sharapova's final event of the year came at the 2014 WTA Finals, held in Singapore for the first time. As the second seed, she was placed in the White Group alongside Petra Kvitová, Agnieszka Radwańska and Caroline Wozniacki. Sharapova started the tournament poorly, losing in three sets to Wozniacki before being pushed to the brink of elimination after a straight sets defeat to Kvitová. In spite of losing her first two matches, Sharapova entered her final match against Radwańska still able to qualify for the semifinals, provided that she won in straight sets, while Wozniacki did the same against Kvitová. Despite taking a commanding 7–5, 5–1 lead against Radwańska, Sharapova was unable to convert three match points and ultimately lost the second set on a tiebreak, eliminating her from the tournament. She went on to win the deciding set to earn her first round-robin win, but the result wasn't enough to see her into the semifinals. In the following match, Wozniacki beat Kvitová 6–2, 6–3, meaning that Sharapova would have progressed had she won the second set. In spite of the round-robin elimination, Sharapvoa retained her ranking position, finishing 2014 ranked second behind Serena Williams.
30 December 2013 – 5 January 2014
|1||1R||Caroline Garcia||#74||Win||6–3, 6–0|
|–||2R||Ashleigh Barty (Q)||#190||Walkover||N/A|
|2||QF||Kaia Kanepi||#30||Win||4–6, 6–3, 6–2|
|3||SF||Serena Williams||#1||Loss||2–6, 6–7(7–9)|
13–26 January 2014
|4||1R||Bethanie Mattek-Sands||#41||Win||6–3, 6–4|
|5||2R||Karin Knapp||#44||Win||6–3, 4–6, 10–8|
|6||3R||Alizé Cornet||#25||Win||6–1, 7–6 (8–6)|
|7||4R||Dominika Cibulková||#24||Loss||6–2, 4–6, 1–6|
|Open GDF Suez
27 January – 2 February 2014
|8||2R||Daniela Hantuchová||#31||Win||6–0, 6–1|
|9||QF||Kirsten Flipkens||#21||Win||6–2, 6–2|
|10||SF||Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova||#26||Loss||6–4, 3–6, 4–6|
|BNP Paribas Open
Indian Wells, United States
WTA Premier Mandatory
3–16 March 2014
|11||2R||Julia Görges||#86||Win||6–1, 6–4|
|12||3R||Camila Giorgi (Q)||#79||Loss||3–6, 6–4, 5–7|
|Sony Open Tennis
Key Biscayne, United States
WTA Premier Mandatory
17–30 March 2014
|13||2R||Kurumi Nara||#45||Win||6–3, 6–4|
|14||3R||Lucie Šafářová||#27||Win||6–4, 6–7(7–9), 6–2|
|15||4R||Kirsten Flipkens||#23||Win||3–6, 6–4, 6–1|
|16||QF||Petra Kvitová||#8||Win||7–5, 6–1|
|17||SF||Serena Williams||#1||Loss||4–6, 3–6|
|Porsche Tennis Grand Prix
Clay (red), indoor
21–27 April 2014
|18||1R||Lucie Šafářová||#26||Win||7–6(7–5), 6–7(5–7), 7–6(7–2)|
|19||2R||Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova||#25||Win||6–4, 6–3|
|20||QF||Agnieszka Radwańska||#3||Win||6–4, 6–3|
|21||SF||Sara Errani||#11||Win||6–1, 6–2|
|22||F||Ana Ivanovic||#12||Win (1)||3–6, 6–4, 6–1|
|Mutua Madrid Open
WTA Premier Mandatory
2–11 May 2014
|23||1R||Klára Koukalová||#31||Win||6–1, 6–2|
|24||2R||Christina McHale||#56||Win||6–1, 4–6, 6–4|
|25||3R||Samantha Stosur||#19||Win||6–4, 6–3|
|26||QF||Li Na||#2||Win||2–6, 7–6(7–5), 6–3|
|27||SF||Agnieszka Radwańska||#3||Win||6–1, 6–4|
|28||F||Simona Halep||#5||Win (2)||1–6, 6–2, 6–3|
|Internazionali BNL d'Italia
WTA Premier Five
12–18 May 2014
|29||2R||Monica Puig||#60||Win||6–3, 7–5|
|30||3R||Ana Ivanovic||#13||Loss||1–6, 4–6|
25 May – 7 June 2014
|31||1R||Ksenia Pervak (Q)||#160||Win||6–1, 6–2|
|32||2R||Tsvetana Pironkova||#42||Win||7–5, 6–2|
|33||3R||Paula Ormaechea||#75||Win||6–0, 6–0|
|34||4R||Samantha Stosur||#18||Win||3–6, 6–4, 6–0|
|35||QF||Garbiñe Muguruza||#35||Win||1–6, 7–5, 6–1|
|36||SF||Eugenie Bouchard||#16||Win||4–6, 7–5, 6–2|
|37||F||Simona Halep||#4||Win (3)||6–4, 6–7(5–7), 6–4|
London, United Kingdom
23 June – 6 July 2014
|38||1R||Samantha Murray (WC)||#247||Win||6–1, 6–0|
|39||2R||Timea Bacsinszky (Q)||#85||Win||6–2, 6–1|
|40||3R||Alison Riske||#44||Win||6–3, 6–0|
|41||4R||Angelique Kerber||#7||Loss||6–7(4–7), 6–4, 4–6|
WTA Premier Five
4–10 August 2014
|42||2R||Garbiñe Muguruza||#27||Win||4–6, 6–3, 6–1|
|43||3R||Carla Suárez Navarro||#16||Loss||2–6, 6–4, 2–6|
|Western & Southern Open
Cincinnati, United States of America
WTA Premier Five
11–17 August 2014
|44||2R||Madison Keys||#28||Win||6–1, 3–6, 6–3|
|45||3R||Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova||#25||Win||6–4, 7–6 (7–2)|
|46||QF||Simona Halep||#2||Win||3–6, 6–4, 6–4|
|47||SF||Ana Ivanovic||#11||Loss||2–6, 7–5, 5–7|
New York City, United States
25 August – 8 September 2014
|48||1R||Maria Kirilenko||#113||Win||6–4, 6–0|
|49||2R||Alexandra Dulgheru||#95||Win||4–6, 6–3, 6–2|
|50||3R||Sabine Lisicki||#28||Win||6–2, 6–4|
|51||4R||Caroline Wozniacki||#11||Loss||4–6, 6–2, 2–6|
WTA Premier 5
21–27 September 2014
|52||2R||Svetlana Kuznetsova||#25||Win||3–6, 6–2, 6–2|
|53||3R||Timea Bacsinszky||#61||Loss||6–7(3–7), 5–7|
WTA Premier Mandatory
29 September – 5 October 2014
|54||1R||Kaia Kanepi||#45||Win||6–4, 6–1|
|55||2R||Elina Svitolina||#33||Win||6–2, 6–2|
|56||3R||Carla Suárez Navarro||#18||Win||6–1, 7–6(7–3)|
|57||QF||Svetlana Kuznetsova||#27||Win||6–0, 6–4|
|58||SF||Ana Ivanovic||#9||Win||6–0, 6–4|
|59||F||Petra Kvitová||#3||Win (4)||6–4, 2–6, 6–3|
17 – 26 October 2014
|60||RR||Caroline Wozniacki||#8||Loss||6–7(4–7), 7–6(7–5), 2–6|
|61||RR||Petra Kvitová||#3||Loss||3–6, 2–6|
|62||RR||Agnieszka Radwańska||#6||Win||7–5, 6–7(4–7), 6–2|
Ordered by number of wins
Singles: 4 (4–0)Edit
|Outcome||No.||Date||Championship||Surface||Opponent in the final||Score in the final|
|Winner||30.||27 April 2014||Stuttgart Open, Stuttgart, Germany (3)||Clay (i)||Ana Ivanovic||3–6, 6–4, 6–1|
|Winner||31.||11 May 2014||Madrid Open, Madrid, Spain||Clay||Simona Halep||1–6, 6–2, 6–3|
|Winner||32.||7 June 2014||French Open, Paris, France (2)||Clay||Simona Halep||6–4, 6–7(5–7), 6–4|
|Winner||33.||5 October 2014||China Open, Beijing, China||Hard||Petra Kvitová||6–4, 2–6, 6–3|
|3||Open GDF Suez||$34,350||$210,331|
|4||BNP Paribas Open||$28,000||$238,331|
|5||Sony Open Tennis||$192,485||$430,816|
|6||Porsche Tennis Grand Prix||$120,000||$550,816|
|7||Mutua Madrid Open||$938,101||$1,488,917|
|8||Internazionali BNL d'Italia||$27,354||$1,516,271|
|12||Western & Southern Open||$113,770||$4,011,860|
Figures in United States dollars (USD) unless noted.