Maria Sharapova born 19 April 1987) is a Russian professional tennis player, who as of October 6, 2014 is ranked world No. 2 by the Women's Tennis Association (WTA). A United States resident since 1994, Sharapova has competed on the WTA tour since 2001. She has been ranked world No. 1 in singles by the WTA on five separate occasions, for a total of 21 weeks. She became the world No. 1 for the first time on August 22, 2005 at the age of 18, and last held the ranking for the fifth time for four weeks from June 11, 2012 to July 8, 2012.She is the reigning champion in singles at the French Open.
Sharapova’s 34 singles titles and five Grand Slam titles — two at the French Open and one at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open — rank third amongst active players, behind Serena and Venus Williams. She won the year-ending WTA Finals in her debut in 2004. In 2012 she won an Olympic silver medal for Russia at the London Games. She has also won three doubles titles.
Despite an injury-prone career, Sharapova has achieved a rare level of longevity in the women’s game. She has won at least one singles title a year from 2003 until 2015, a streak only bested by Steffi Graf, Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert. With her victory at the 2012 French Open, Sharapova became only the sixth woman in the Open Era (tenth all-time) to complete a career Grand Slam. Sharapova’s trademark is her unyielding fighting spirit and will to win. Several tennis pundits and former players have called Sharapova one of tennis’s best competitors, with John McEnroe calling her one of the best the sport has ever seen.
Sharapova has been featured in a number of modeling assignments, including a feature in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. She has been featured in many advertisements, including for Nike, Prince, and Canon, and is the face of several fashion houses, most notably Cole Haan. Since February 2007, she has been a United Nations Development Programme Goodwill Ambassador, concerned specifically with the Chernobyl Recovery and Development Programme. In June 2011, she was named one of the "30 Legends of Women's Tennis: Past, Present and Future" by Time, and in March 2012 was named one of the "100 Greatest of All Time" by Tennis Channel.
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