A look back at 10 of Maria Sharapova's greatest moments on court

by: John Berkok | April 20, 2017

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Maria Sharapova defeated Sara Errani in the 2012 French Open final. (AP)

It was Maria Sharapova’s 30th birthday on Wednesday! To celebrate her big day, let’s take a walk down memory lane. In chronological order, here are 10 of the greatest moments of Sharapova’s career:

1. Winning Wimbledon in 2004: A 17-year-old Sharapova pulled off back-to-back stunners over Lindsay Davenport and Serena Williams, in the semis and final, to become the fourth-youngest woman to win a Grand Slam title in the Open era after Martina Hingis, Monica Seles and Steffi Graf.

2. Winning the WTA Finals in 2004: Sharapova battled back from 4-0 down in the third set against an injured Williams to win her biggest career title outside the Grand Slams. It would also turn out to be her last career win over Williams—she’s lost all 18 of their encounters since then.

3. Her first win over a world No. 1: Sharapova edged Davenport in the final of Tokyo [Pan Pacific] in 2005, 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (5), for the first of her seven career wins over world No. 1s.

4. Becoming world No. 1 for the first time: On August 22, 2005, Sharapova moved past Davenport to become No. 1 for the first time—and become the first Russian woman to reach No.1.

5. Winning the U.S. Open in 2006: Sharapova defeated Justine Henin to win the U.S. Open in 2006. She was 19 at the time, and that’s the last time a teenager has won a Grand Slam title.

6. Winning the Australian Open in 2008: Sharapova outhit Ana Ivanovic to win her first Australian Open title—she actually got off to a phenomenal 18-0 start to the season that year.

7. Winning the French Open in 2012: Sharapova beat Sara Errani to win her first French Open in 2012, becoming just the sixth woman in the Open era to complete a career Grand Slam after Margaret Court, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Graf and Williams.

8. Getting back to No. 1 from No. 126. On June 11, 2012, after winning her first French Open, Sharapova got back to No. 1, which may have been even sweeter than any of the other times she did it, given she had fallen as low as No. 126 in 2009 after a nine-month shoulder injury layoff.

9. Winning Olympic silver in London: She didn’t get the gold—Williams beat her in the final—but in Sharapova’s only Olympics, she came away with a silver medal for Russia.

10. Winning her fifth, and most recent, Grand Slam title: Sharapova survived a marathon final against Simona Halep to take a second French Open crown—and fifth Grand Slam title—in 2014.

Originally published on TennisChannel.com. Read more articles by John Berkok here
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