Sharapova’s wildcards driven by media coverage: Murray

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 11 May 2017 09:24:40


THE level of media coverage surrounding Maria Sharapova’s return to tennis from a doping suspension has been a key factor in the five-time Grand Slam winner being offered wildcards to events, men’s world number one Andy Murray has said.

‘The Times’ reported this week that Sharapova would be awarded a wildcard by the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) to play at next month’s Aegon Classic in Birmingham.
“I do think the tournaments are going to do what they think is going to sell the most tickets, give them the most coverage, get the most people in to watch,” Murray told BBC Sport.
“I’m sure the LTA saw the coverage that was given...the amount of media covering it, and think that’s what’s best for the tournament in Birmingham. But I’m sure it’s split a lot of opinion.

“I’m sure the discussions about whether to give it or not were long... but they’ve obviously done what they think is right for that event and maybe haven’t thought as much about the wider implications.”

Kyrgios sets up potential Nadal clash
NICK Kyrgios could face Rafael Nadal in a blockbuster third-round clash at the Madrid Masters on Thursday after easily seeing off Ryan Harrison 6-3, 6-3.
Nadal begins his quest for a fifth title in Madrid against Italy’s Fabio Fognini.

Kyrgios and Nadal have only met twice with the Australian making his breakthrough with a four-set win over the 14-time Grand Slam champion at Wimbledon in 2014.

Meanwhile, Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on Wednesday retired from the Madrid Open due to a problem in his shoulder, which means Spain’s David Ferrer entered directly to the round of 16. Ferrer will face the winner of the match between the Argentine Diego Schwartzman and Japanese Kei Nishikori.