Tennis: Sharapova set for 'major announcement'

Maria Sharapova reacts as she watches a match between Ekaterina Makarova and Kiki Bertens on Feb 6, 2016.
Maria Sharapova reacts as she watches a match between Ekaterina Makarova and Kiki Bertens on Feb 6, 2016.PHOTO: REUTERS

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Former world No. 1 Maria Sharapova has scheduled a news conference on Monday in Los Angeles (around Tuesday, 4am Singapore time) to make a "major announcement", raising questions about her tennis future after months of nagging injuries.

The 28-year-old Russian has played in only three WTA Tour events over the past eight months and has not taken to the court competitively since losing to Serena Williams in the Australian Open quarter-finals in January.

Sharapova, ranked seventh, withdrew from the upcoming event at Indian Wells due to a left-forearm injury.

She missed last year's US Open because of a right-leg injury that curtailed her tournament schedule for the remainder of the 2015 campaign.

Sharapova is involved in several business ventures off the court, notably her "Sugarpova" candy line, and won a silver medal for Russia at the 2012 London Olympics.

She has won 35 career WTA titles and is among 10 women who own a career Grand Slam. She won the 2004 Wimbledon crown, the 2006 US Open title, the 2008 Australian Open and the 2012 and 2014 French Opens.

But in between her success, she has often been plagued by injury, notably long-running problems with her shoulder.