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Marcell
May 27th, 2009, 09:44 PM
Sharapova's not daddy's girl anymore

By Dave James

PARIS (AFP) — The Maria Sharapova story: Part two, is missing one of its leading men from the fairytale's first chapter - father Yuri.

But the Russian star is getting used to not having the man around despite him famously accompanying her on her life-changing journey to Florida, and eventual super-stardom, when she was only nine.

"After I won my third Grand Slam, he said, 'Look, I like hiking and skiing a lot, and he wanted to pursue that," said Sharapova.

"So he's currently enjoying his life, and I think he really deserves it. He was training with us in Florida and Los Angeles in the last couple of months when I was getting back and practicing a lot and playing matches.

"But I don't think you'll see him at too many tournaments. It's not so strange as most of last year he didn't come to a majority of the events."

Yuri Sharapov has ceded coaching duties to former tour player Michael Joyce who has worked constantly with the Russian to get her back on tour after her agonising 10-month lay-off, recovering from shoulder surgery.

All that work paid dividends on Wednesday when the former world number one battled for over two hours to see off compatriot Nadia Petrova 6-2, 1-6, 8-6 to reach the French Open last 32.

Sharapova, who came into Paris with her ranking at 102, said she used her absence from the tour as a motivation to increase her workload and that watching from the sidelines proved to be the impetus she needed, even if it meant training at strange hours of the day.

"At the beginning of the year it actually motivated me more than anything. I'd be in my hotel room in Phoenix and it would be like 11:00 p.m. and I'd watch a match and I'd be so motivated from the girls playing I'd go to the gym," she said.

"It would be dark outside and I'd ask them to open the gym so I could work out."

Sharapova has now played two three-set matches at Roland Garros as she steps up her push to win the only Grand Slam title she has never won with a semi-final run in 2007 her best performance.

The next round should, in theory, be a slightly easier afternoon's work with Kazakh qualifier Yaroslava Shvedova her opponent before a potential quarter-final clash with Venus Williams further down the line.

"I think these types of matches are really important for me and for my game," explained Sharapova.

"Obviously I'm spending a little bit more time out there than I want to, but I think I'm learning so many new things, as well.

"When you haven't played for such a long time, when you get back out there, and you're put in these situations, many things come back to you.

"I think this was a great match where I had to fight my way through many, many challenges, and I did."

Copyright © 2009 AFP. All rights reserved

Edinboro
May 27th, 2009, 09:47 PM
YES! No more Yuri!

Praise Jesus

bobbynorwich
May 27th, 2009, 09:51 PM
Lots of parents travel with their tennis pro kids for their entire careers. Look at Dementieva, Jankovic, and the Williams. Lots of others don't. What's the big deal here?

Becool
May 27th, 2009, 09:53 PM
oh damn.. bashin her will never be the same :p

Noctis
May 27th, 2009, 09:55 PM
Maria us REAL Fans believe you coming back and work so hard.
Please do well here in RG!

Rod the Bama
May 27th, 2009, 09:55 PM
I think that Yuri being absent was inevitable sooner or later. I`m glad to hear that he`s relaxing and enjoying himself these days. However i miss seeing him at the matches. Maybe it`s just me, but i liked seeing Yuri at Maria`s matches.

Warrior
May 27th, 2009, 09:57 PM
At last

JadeFox
May 27th, 2009, 09:58 PM
Lots of parents travel with their tennis pro kids for their entire careers. Look at Dementieva, Jankovic, and the Williams. Lots of others don't. What's the big deal here?

It's not a big deal. But considering in the past people have tried to portray Yuri as this psycho who controls Maria's every move, this is probably a big deal for them.

Yuri was slowly not going to all of Maria's tournaments outside of Slams since last year.

ElusiveChanteuse
May 27th, 2009, 09:59 PM
AAAAAaaaawwwww....

joăo.
May 27th, 2009, 10:03 PM
:worship: She looks and sounds so mature. :inlove:

SvetaPleaseWin.
May 27th, 2009, 10:04 PM
i think thats good for her during matches, he was quite clearly against her when she was losing when the last thing she needed was to look up and see him looking pissed off/abusing her

plus this way she can get coaching off michael joyce, bananas anyone? ;)

goldenlox
May 27th, 2009, 10:06 PM
When he did that throat slash right after Henin's 35 match win streak ended, I figured Maria was crazy to want that as part of how people remember her.
So I'm not surprised.

Ciarán
May 27th, 2009, 10:07 PM
:d

cn ireland
May 27th, 2009, 10:17 PM
Interesting article, thanks for posting:yeah:!

Sharpie4me
May 27th, 2009, 10:17 PM
The new chapter of her career began in Warsaw two weeks ago ;)

Helen Lawson
May 27th, 2009, 10:20 PM
It's not a big deal. But considering in the past people have tried to portray Yuri as this psycho who controls Maria's every move, this is probably a big deal for them.

Yuri was slowly not going to all of Maria's tournaments outside of Slams since last year.

I noticed that, too. I assumed at the time she was getting older and maybe set him up financially and sort of got rid of him from the tour to do her own thing, which is understandable. I guess maybe it was his idea. I always pegged him as a control freak, though, but who knows.

Coffee&TV
May 27th, 2009, 11:34 PM
Awww. But I think it's a good news. :lol:

-jenks-
May 27th, 2009, 11:38 PM
Thank God! I used to hate sharapova, but most of that was because of Yuri! :o

miffedmax
May 27th, 2009, 11:44 PM
DAMMIT! Once again, the wrong Russian blonde does the right thing.

friendsita
May 27th, 2009, 11:44 PM
Congrats Masha!!
ur father sucks!

nelsondan
May 27th, 2009, 11:57 PM
I wondered---please tell me if it is not the case---whether the French crowd was uncharacteristically supportive of Maria, today.

Vincey!
May 28th, 2009, 12:00 AM
Nice article!!! really interesting :hearts:

woosey
May 28th, 2009, 12:13 AM
oh yes...sitting around watching the likes of wozniacki and even safina, pova was like wtf?

Sha_ra_po_va
May 28th, 2009, 12:31 AM
I wondered---please tell me if it is not the case---whether the French crowd was uncharacteristically supportive of Maria, today.

no, you're absolutely right! I noticed it too. I was actually a bit apprehensive of maria's welcome at RG this year, as she's never been one of their faves (not clever/dinky/crafty/french), but also because of her infamous (and VERY funny) "Allez up your ****in ass!" from last year! However, the crowd on lenglen really got behind her and were very warm in their applause, esp at the end. By the way - what a great fight from her today, yuri or no yuri, it was inspirational!

Привет
May 28th, 2009, 01:48 AM
It's nice that she won't have her parent hanging around all the time, I think. :) Although Yuri provided many a good laugh in the past! :rolls:

vettipooh
May 28th, 2009, 02:04 AM
Yuri said "it's either Charlie or me". Maria said :wavey:

Jacey
May 28th, 2009, 02:17 AM
Yuri said "it's either Charlie or me". Maria said :wavey:

:haha:

youizahoe
May 28th, 2009, 02:39 AM
I liked Yuri, all the controversy he caused with the 'throat' gesture, I just loved it. I love these :cuckoo: parents :hearts:

Dave.
May 28th, 2009, 02:43 AM
I noticed that, too. I assumed at the time she was getting older and maybe set him up financially and sort of got rid of him from the tour to do her own thing, which is understandable. I guess maybe it was his idea. I always pegged him as a control freak, though, but who knows.

That is what I did think, but if that were the case Yuri could have left a while back. He was probably set up once she won Wimbledon. ;) I always thought he wanted Sharapova to do the absolute best she could and become a great player (not just for the money) which is why he kept going so long, so it surprises me that he has taken a back seat now, although I am sure he will still keep a close eye.

To be honest though, for me it's a good thing. I never liked him and I won't miss his presence in the matches. Interesting to see if this has an effect on Sharapova's on-court intensity, although I doubt it after today.

Midnight_Robber
May 28th, 2009, 02:44 AM
Good for Maria. I've always believed that she has what it takes to figure it out and win or lose on her own anyway. I think Yuri was actually doing more harm than good a lot of the time.

unknowndiamond
May 28th, 2009, 03:08 AM
I miss him:sad:.He's made me laugh all the time :haha: