Sharapova gets red-hot Garcia in tough Tianjin opener

first_imgMaria Sharapova of Russia reacts during her women’s singles match against Simona Halep of Romania in the China Open tennis tournament at the Diamond Court in Beijing, Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)Maria Sharapova’s stop-start comeback from a 15-month doping ban takes her to the Chinese city of Tianjin this week and a tough draw against France’s on-form Caroline Garcia.The five-time Grand Slam champion and former number one from Russia has been paired with top seed Garcia in her opener at the Tianjin Open, where she was granted a wildcard.ADVERTISEMENT Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC LATEST STORIES But as usual, most focus will be on the 30-year-old Sharapova, who has struggled for top form and fitness since returning to tennis in April following her suspension for taking the banned substance meldonium.She fell in the third round at the China Open to Halep, who will be confirmed as number one for the first time on Monday. Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH View comments LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary Read Next BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong Citycenter_img Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Ronaldinho plays soccer exhibition with Chechnya leader MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  However, 15th-ranked Garcia has been carrying a thigh injury and combined with her reaching Sunday’s final of the China Open, she could yet choose to skip Tianjin.Sharapova, now ranked a lowly 104 in the world, could hardly have a harder opponent.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutGarcia is in the form of her life, winning the Wuhan Open last weekend and later Sunday playing new number one Simona Halep in the final in Beijing.Also taking part in Tianjin, which is near the Chinese capital, is the two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova.last_img

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