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Maria Sharapova Biography

Maria Sharapova - Russian Racket

Maria Sharapova was born in Siberia, Russia, where her parents had fled to from Belarus to avoid radiation from a nasty nuclear accident in Chernobyl. She first started playing tennis when a family friend gave her an old racket when she was four years old. She spent hours hitting tennis balls against the side of her house and her tennis talent was quickly spotted by Russian tennis coaches. When Maria was seven, her parents scraped all the money they could get together to send her to the United States to train at the prestigious Bollettieri Sports Academy in Florida. Her coaches were amazed at Sharapova's skill on the court and her coaches began grooming her to be the next great female tennis star.

Maria Sharapova - Siberian Siren

Maria Sharapova turned pro in 2001 when she was just 14. With her overpowering serve and long reach, Sharapova quickly made a name for herself on the tennis court and won her first tournament at the age of 16. A year later, Sharapova pulled off one of the biggest upsets in women's tennis history by defeating Serena Williams to win the 2004 Wimbledon tennis tournament. The victory turned the six-foot Sharapova into an international sports star and made her a ton of cash through million-dollar endorsement deals with Nike, Motorola and other big name brands. While her good looks and dominating tennis game have made her a fan favorite, Sharapova has also become famous for the loud noises she lets out on the court. The grunts and screams have earned her the nickname the Siberian Siren from some of her opponents, who find her noises distracting and intimidating.

Maria Sharapova - Did You Know?

  • Maria's birthday is April 19th.
  • At the 2005 Wimbledon tennis tournament, one of Maria Sharapova's grunts was measured at over 100 decibels, which is just as loud as a police siren!
  • Maria Sharapova's favorite desert is crepes with Nutella.
  • In 2004, Maria Sharapova played table tennis on MTV's Total Request Live.
  • In 2014 she won her 2nd French Open.
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