The 33-year-old five-time Major champion Maria Sharapova has said yes forever! Sharapova has announced she and Alexander Gilkes are now engaged, planning to crown their love with marriage. Sharapova revealed her relationship with a British businessman in October 2018.
They will now take the next step, almost a year after the Russian had ended her career at the Australian Open. Sharapova traveled to Bollettieri Academy when she was nine, working on her game and becoming one of the world's most tremendous talents.
Maria claimed three back-to-back ITF titles in 2002, finishing the season inside the top-200 and cracking the top-50 a year later following two WTA titles! Marching towards the top, a teenage sensation claimed the Wimbledon crown in 2004 at 17, writing history books and adding four more Major trophies to her tally.
For the next 12 years, Sharapova had remained one of the world's best players before everything went down for her following that 18-month suspension. Maria made a solid comeback in the spring of 2017 but could never reach her A-game again, struggling with injuries and lifting only one WTA trophy after Rome 2015.
In her last notable season, Sharapova finished 2018 inside the top-30, struggling with injuries and competing at only eight events in 2019. The five-time Major champion was the quarter-finalist in Shenzhen, followed by the fourth-round loss to Ashleigh Barty at the Australian Open that gave her confidence ahead of the upcoming tournaments.
Nonetheless, those Melbourne victories proved to be the last back-to-back wins for the Russian, who withdrew from St. Petersburg and stayed sidelined until Mallorca in June with ongoing shoulder problems.
Maria Sharapova is engaged to Alexander Gilkes.
Sharapova scored only two wins in the season's last five tournaments, suffering that massive loss against Serena Williams in New York and finishing the year after that encounter, unable to compete in Linz or Luxembourg.
Rested and confident, Maria defeated Ajla Tomljanovic at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in December, hoping for more of the same in 2020 but ending her career after losses to Jennifer Brady and Donna Vekic in Brisbane and the Australian Open.
Maria Sharapova became world no. 1 in August 2005 and won 36 WTA titles from 59 finals. "In giving my life to tennis, tennis gave me life, and I'll miss it every day. I'll miss the training and my daily routine: waking up at dawn, lacing my left shoe before my right, and closing the court's gate before I hit my first ball of the day.
I'll miss my team and my coaches. I'll miss the moments sitting with my father on the practice court bench," Maria Sharapova said on her retirement.