Maria Sharapova Takes Top Spot
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Zach Perles
One Advantage Court
08/22/05 - Today eighteen-year-old Maria Sharapova became the top-ranked player in the world. She is the first Russian woman in tennis history to achieve a top world ranking.
“Being No. 1 in the world makes the years of hard work and sacrifice worth it,” said Sharapova. “I’ve been playing competitive tennis since I can remember, and it has always been a dream of mine to be No. 1 in the world."
Sharapova’s teammates at Prince Tennis share in her excitement and extend a heartfelt “congratulations” to Maria and her family. Sharapova has been playing with Prince for over a decade and has played an integral part in helping shape the brand, particularly over the last several years.
“I’ve been working with Maria since she was seven years old, and it has been incredible watching her game evolve,” said Linda Glassel, Vice President of Marketing Communications at Prince. “She has earned this title through years of sacrifice and dedication to improving her game. She’s truly inspirational to young players with her presence, both on and off the court.”
Sharapova shifts from No. 2 to No. 1 today after overtaking Lindsay Davenport to become the fifth youngest world No.1 in ranking-points history. Sharapova first claimed the No. 2 spot this past April, after wins at January's Toray Pan-Pacific Open and February's Qatar Total Open.
“My father has such great faith in my ability to excel in the sport that he sacrificed so much for the sake of my game,” she added. “Now we are both excited about keeping the momentum going as I continue my tournament play.”
Sharapova began hitting tennis balls at age four and at age six participated in an exhibition in Moscow that featured tennis great Martina Navratilova. At age nine, she left her native Russia with her father and coach Yuri Sharapova and moved to Bradenton, Florida, where she began training at Nick Bollettieri’s Tennis Academy.
Sharapova made her professional tournament debut in 2001 at the International Tennis Federation event in Sarasota, Florida. But her breakthrough season came two years later in 2003 when she qualified for her first Grand Slam, the Australian Open.
Then in 2004, Sharapova defeated the heavily favored Serena Williams to capture the coveted Wimbledon title. It was one of the most stunning upsets in the tournament’s history, and Maria became the third-youngest Wimbledon champion of the Open era and the first-ever Russian Wimbledon champion.
About Prince Sports
The established industry leader in the development and manufacturing of performance tennis equipment, Prince Sports, Inc., is based in New Jersey. Prince revolutionized the game of tennis with its introduction of the “Oversize” and “Longbody” ® racquet technology, and, in 2005, introduces O3 Engineering, a breakthrough in tennis technology that increases the sweet spot up to 54 percent enabling players to hit their best shots more often. Today, Prince Sports has operations on three continents and distribution in over 100 countries. For more information, please visit www.princetennis.com.