Maria Yuryevna Sharápova(born April 19, 1987) is a Russian professional tennis player who is currently ranked No.1 in the world. At the end of 2006, she was the world's highest-paid female athlete.Sharapova has won three Grand Slam singles titles. In 2004, she beat Serena Williams to take the Wimbledon title at the age of 17 as the 13th seed. Two years later, she defeated Justine Henin in the final of the 2006 U.S. Open as the 3rd seed. At the 2008 Australian Open, she beat Ana Ivanovic, the 4th seed, in the final as the 5th seed. Sharapova has been ranked in the top 10 since winning Wimbledon, the longest of any current female tennis player.
The Chernobyl nuclear accident in 1986 compelled Sharapova's parents, Yuri and Yelena, ethnic Russians, to move from Gomel, Belarus, to the town of Nyagan in Siberia, Russia to live with Yelena's father.Maria was born the following year.Sharapova started playing tennis at the age of four. Her father brought her to the United States when she was seven years old, to attend the Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy in Bradenton, Florida.Her mother, Yelena, could not come with them because of visa restrictions, and followed two years later.Sharapova has lived in the United States since then, but retains her Russian citizenship.She has a home in Manhattan Beach, California.