Serena Williams pulls out of showdown with Maria Sharapova

Serena Williams pulls out of showdown with Maria Sharapova

But even the American 23-times Grand Slam champion, back after having her first child in September, must have been bewildered when a United States reporter tried to throw a new light on her fierce rivalry with old foe Maria Sharapova, who she faces in the French Open last 16 on Monday.

Goolagong Cawley wasn't surprised that Williams was unable to back up for her fourth match in less than a week since making her grand slam comeback after the birth of her first child only last September.

The withdrawal was first reported to be coming on French television, but it wasn't confirmed until later, when the 23-time Grand Slam champion officially announced it.

Williams cried off with a chest muscle injury leaving a major doubt over whether she will be fit to play at Wimbledon next month.

"I gave up so much". "So it's really hard to be in this situation, but I always, for now in my life, I just always try to think positive and just think of the bigger picture and hopefully the next events and the rest of the year".

Serena Williams has withdrawn from Roland Garros just moments before her fourth-round match against Maria Sharapova. The most recent match was in the 2014 Canadian Masters, a match Sharapova won in three sets.

"I'm beyond disappointed", Williams added.

"You know, it's just a match I always get up for".

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"Plus I wanted to try different tapings and different strappings and lots of different stuff to see what was helping and what I could try in my singles match". She told reporters, "I thought it was a ideal opportunity to see how I was going".

After Williams had confessed she was 'beyond disappointed' at withdrawing, Sharapova admitted that she felt the same, while hoping to see her old nemesis back on the tour sooner rather than later.

Sharapova turned the situation around, but Garcia got a lot of praise.

Sharapova also wrote that she thought Williams hated her "for hearing her cry". "So I'm just going to do what the doctors think I should do, and get all the evaluations on it".

Asked whether it was a mistake to play in Sunday's doubles she replied: 'I really felt like I needed to play.

Sharapova will now move into the quarterfinals.

In the quarter-finals, Sharapova will play the victor of the fourth-round showdown between Garbine Muguruza (Spain) and Lesia Tsurenko (Ukraine). I'm not serving that often; I'm serving once every four games...

In her press conference, Serena said she began to feel the issue in her third-round singles match against Julia Goerges.

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