Tennis: Sharapova comeback cut short by new injury

AFP , Monday 28 Sep 2015

Maria Sharapova
Russia's Maria Sharapova wipes her face as she plays against Czech Republic's Barbora Strycova during their women's singles match at the Wuhan Open tennis tournament, Hubei province, China, September 28, 2015. Sharapova has withdrawn during the game from the tournament due to her injury, on Monday. (Reuters)

Maria Sharapova's comeback from a leg injury lasted less than three sets on Monday before she retired with a left arm problem against unseeded Barbora Strycova at the Wuhan Open.

The world number three had been out with a persistent leg injury since July, when she lost a Wimbledon semi-final to Serena Williams, and pulled out of three events including the US Open.

But the Russian's long-awaited return proved short-lived as she was pushed to two tie-breaks by the Czech Republic's Strycova before withdrawing when 2-1 up in the third.

Sharapova's retirement leaves a question mark over the rest of her season with only one big tournament, the China Open, left before the year-ending WTA Finals in Singapore.

She had pulled out of a WTA event in Toronto and the Cincinnati Masters hoping to be ready for the US Open, but was also forced to withdraw from the year's final Grand Slam tournament.

"Obviously I took a large amount of time to get back to a level where I can come to a tournament, which is very important," Sharapova said Saturday as she arrived in Wuhan.

"I wouldn't be here if I wasn't healthy and ready to compete."

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