Maria Sharapova’s shoulder has always been a problem during her career.
Her performance against Caroline Wozniacki which I saw live was honestly one of the best I saw during my time at Melbourne Park.
Finding any consistency and rhythm in her game and balancing this on-going shoulder issue is a big problem.
Withdrawing from Indian Wells this early shows there is still an underlying problem and I’d be surprised if she makes it now to Miami and might just go straight for clay if he body can hold up.
Inevitably the injury and failing to recover and perform with this shoulder means the resurfacing of that question. Is not being able to take Meldonium a big factor?
I don’t think asking this question for one moment is disrespectful or rude but relevant.
This question was put to Maria in Melbourne following her defeat to Ash Barty.
The former number one was asked;
“You took Meldonium legally for 10 years to deal with your health problems, is it a struggle physically to deal with the demands of a Grand Slam without being able to take it?”
“Is there another question?”
I didn’t think there was anything wrong with the question or putting the link together.
I’m no medical expert and I could not tell you what the effects are but it is a genuine question.
Now we ask, what next?
Maria skipped all tournaments following New York and has retired twice this year with a couple of withdrawals to.
Is surgery an option to give a go at another comeback because in all honesty this problem doesn’t look like going away and Maria has said it is about pain management but at the moment she can’t get fit for a sustained amount of time and compete at a high level regularly.