Maria Sharapova Withdraws from WTA Championships in Istanbul, Paves Way for Three More Players to Qualify

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By Rachelle Corpuz | October 8, 2013 3:30 PM EST

On September, IBT Australia reported that Russian tennis superstar Maria Sharapova has made it to qualify for the World Tennis Association (WTA) Championship to be held in Istanbul, Turkey in October. Unfortunately, Sharapova has withdrawn from the season-ending WTA championships.

Sharapova ranked World No 1 in singles on five separate instances through the WTA, for more than five months. The first time that she became number 1 was in August 2005. She has a total of 29 WTA singles championship titles.

She confirmed the news on her official Facebook page.

The World No 3 stated that the main reason why she has pulled out from the WTA Championships is still her aching shoulder injury. It was the reason why she has also withdrawn from the recently concluded U.S. Open.

Sharapova's fans would not be so pleased to hear this news, especially the fact that she is still struggling from her recurring shoulder injury. She has fought with it almost throughout her professional tennis career, which eventually required surgical procedure in October 2008.

 Sharapova's withdrawal paved the way for three more players to be eligible for the WTA championships. The 26-year-old player Sara Errani from Italy has made it to qualify. Errani reached the quarterfinals in singles at the Australian Open.  She is ranked World No 5 in singles as of July 29, 2013.

Another tennis player who has qualified is Petra Kvitova from the Czech Republic.  In 2011, Kvitova beat Sharapova and Azarenka in the 2011 Wimbledon Championships and 2011 WTA Tour Championships, respectively.

The last player to have qualified after Sharapova's withdrawal is Jelena Jankovic from Serbia. She is currently World No 8 as of Oct 7, 2013.

The other players who are already on the list include Li Na, Victoria Azarenka, Agnieszka Radwanska and defending champion Serena Williams.

In 2014, the WTA Championships will be held in Singapore. It will be the last year for Istanbul to host the tournament. Maria Sharapova's followers may miss their tennis hero play in action, but surely, there would still be a lot to look forward to in this year's championships.

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