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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Sports
No French Open wildcard for Sharapova
    2017-May-18  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

MARIA SHARAPOVA’S hopes of a dream return from doping outcast to a third French Open crown were shattered Tuesday when the Russian was surprisingly refused a wildcard by organizers.

The 30-year-old, who conquered all on the Parisian clay in 2012 and 2014 but whose career was rocked by a 15-month doping ban last year, was widely expected to be fast-tracked into the tournament.

After only returning to the circuit last month, Sharapova’s ranking, now at 211, was not high enough to warrant an automatic place into the Roland Garros main draw, which starts May 28, or the qualifying event held the week before.

However, in an unexpected move, especially as the French Open is already without pregnant Serena Williams and resting Roger Federer, the French Tennis Federation (FFT) took a moral stand that might please some of her rivals but could hit the tournament’s TV ratings.

“You can get a wildcard when you return from injury but you cannot get a wild card when returning from a doping suspension,” FFT president Bernard Giudicelli said during a news conference broadcast live on Facebook.

“I appreciate the media impact of Maria, I appreciate the broadcasters’ expectations but in conscience, it was not possible to go beyond the anti-doping code and beyond the application of the rules...

“I’m very sorry for Maria, very sorry for her fans,” added Giudicelli. “But it’s my responsibility, my mission, to protect the high standards of the game.”

The bold decision of the French federation now throws the ball in the court of Wimbledon’s organizers who could face a similarly difficult decision when they announce their wildcards June 20. Sharapova, who burst into the spotlight in 2004 when beating Serena Williams to win Wimbledon, is likely to need a wildcard invitation for the main draw at the All England Club.

(SD-Agencies)

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