Maria Sharapova stunts Groth at LA Championships
Maria Sharapova defeated Jarmila Groth 6-0 6-4 in the first round of the LA Womens Tennis Championships presented by Herbalife.
Still working to strengthen her serve following shoulder surgery last year, Sharapova was at times inconsistent in the second set, but more lethal off the ground.
“Her game plan was to attack from every single angle she could,” said Sharapova.
“But she wasn’t able to do that consistently because I was able to retrieve and make her hit more balls.”
After the aggressive Slovakian broke Sharapova to 3-2 in the second set, the Russian pushed on again to break back at 3-3 when Groth erred on a forehand and then fought off three break points to hold to 4-3.
Sharapova then went on to win the match, breaking Groth to love to win the match with a vicious forehand return down the line.
Sharapova will face third seed Victoria Azarenka in the second round.
“She’s always had a great amount of potential and she’s certainly arrived,” said Sharapova. “I love the challenges of playing some of the best in the world.”
Sharapova was joined in the second round by Flavia Pennetta, who beat Varvara Lepchenko 6-2 5-7 6-0, while Anna Chakvetadze upset Virginie Razzano 7-6 6-3.
Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images