Maria Sharapova not given wild-card entry for French Open

Maria Sharapova hits a strong backhand

Maria Sharapova hits a strong backhand

"We did not want to treat Maria Sharapova differently", Giudicelli said in a telephone news conference. "I will be focused on my match", Sharapova said, adding that she would accept a qualifying wildcard.

So he decided not to award her a wild card for the French Open.

Thanks to wild cards at her first two tournaments, she got her world ranking to outside the top 200 this week. Sharapova is still waiting to hear if she will receive a wildcard entry into Roland Garros starting a week from Sunday. The German two-time Grand Slam champion was forced to quit while trailing Canadian Eugenie Bouchard but arrived in Rome on Sunday ready to play in the last big claycourt event before Roland Garros begins on May 28.

She's using another wild card to play in the Italian Open this week.

The Russian tennis player, given a wild card to compete in Rome after returning from a 15-month doping ban, dropped serve three times in a scrappy opening set, but won 6-4, 6-2.

Lucic-Baroni was making a comparison between Armstrong, who was banned from Olympic sports for life for a sophisticated and extensive doping scheme, and Sharapova, who was ruled to have unwittingly taken the drug Meldonium after it had been banned. "I got a lot of texts from people in the tennis world that were just rooting for me". The Russian may have liked to have gone further in Madrid but the tennis she has portrayed has been very good, and she is one of the favourites to win the French Open. This will be a hard-hitting match on the clay courts at the Foro Italico in Rome but the three-time champion should get over the line and reach the third round. Fellow players have shamed her and blasted tennis officials for facilitating her smooth passage back into the sport, and journalists have constantly been asking prickly questions about her delicate situation.

"I don't think a suspension should wipe out the career's worth of work", he said.

But the 30-year-old was not ranked high enough to gain a place in the qualifiers in Paris at the cut-off point after losing to Kristina Mladenovic at the semi-final stage on her comeback in Stuttgart.

Although sympathetic, Giudicelli was also unrepentant.

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