Maria Sharapova has been awarded the honorary Master of Sports of Russia title.
Shamil Tarpishchev, president of the Russian Tennis Federation, awarded Maria Sharapova her new title at the Kremlin Cup press conference.
Maria said she had no idea about the award and was shocked. The press conference took place ahead of the start of the Kremlin Cup. This week’s Kremlin Cup will be the first tournament that Florida-based Maria Sharapova has played in in her native country.
Nevertheless, Maria said she felt like a true Russian. “Even in the U.S. I feel a Russian, and here in Moscow I feel even more Russian,” she was quoted by rtr-sport.ru as saying. However, she said she could not promise to play for the Russian team in next year’s Fed Cup. “I’m not yet physically ready to play for the team. Even without it I play too much tennis for my age. I don’t know how I am going to feel next year and cannot promise anything, although we have got an agreement with Shamil Tarpishchev,” she said.