Sharapova and Azarenka hiding in Serena’s shadow

Sharapova and Azarenka hiding in Serena’s shadow

297

NEW YORK (Reuters) – They have five grand slam titles between them, one each this year and one of them is the world No 1.

Yet on the eve of the U.S. Open, both Maria Sharapovaand Victoria Azarenka find themselves in the shadows, almost forgotten as contenders for the final grand slam event of the year.

That’s because Serena Williams will go into the event with her dominance restored after her victories atWimbledon and at the Olympics.

The American is everyone’s favorite and while world number one Azarenka was reluctant to admit to playing second fiddle, Sharapova was more open about the predicament facing the rest of the field.

“Of course she’s the favorite because she won those two big events back to back,” said Sharapova, who was beaten by Serena in the final of the Olympics.

“She gained a tremendous amount of confidence at Wimbledon, getting through a few tough three-set matches and then when she got to the Olympics, she just improved.”

However, neither Sharapova nor Azarenka are willing to throw in the towel just yet.

“Everybody is still in the draw here,” said Sharapova, who completed a career grand slam when she won the French Open in June. “It starts from the first round on, and that’s why everybody is here.”

Read more at the Orlando Sentinel: