Wimbledon organisers to consider Sharapova wildcard case "alongside everybody else's"

She is also due to find out if she will be granted a wildcard into the French Open

BY Raf Diallo 16:36 Wednesday 3 May 2017, 16:36 3 May 2017

Picture by: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire/PA Images

Wimbledon organisers say they will not make a special case for Maria Sharapova if she has to apply for a wild card for the 2017 tournament.

The former champion is working her way back after a 15 month drugs ban.

Her world ranking is not yet good enough to enter qualifying but the All England Club says an application would be discussed with the rest on June 20th.

With Serena Williams absent while she expects her first child, chairman Philip Brook has been asked if the 2017 tournament needs the presence of a high profile player and former champion like Sharapova.

"We're delighted that [Serena Williams] is to become a Mum and we wish her all the best," said Brook of the 23 time Grand Slam winner.

"The other thing to say is that Wimbledon is a very strong event and we're really looking forward to having a very successful and interesting tournament in any event." 

On the case of a wildcard for Sharapova, he continued: "We have a long standing tried and tested process. That process is in the week before qualifying, we have a meeting of our tennis sub-committee and we discuss all the wildcard applications at that point in time and this year is no different and we'll wait and see whether Maria applies for a wildcard, and if so, we'll consider her case alongside everybody else's."  

The main 2017 Wimbledon tournament will take place between July 3rd and 16th, with qualifying to take place between June 26th and 29th.

Sharapova won Wimbledon in 2004 and has since reached the Women's Singles final again in 2011 when she lost to Petra Kvitova.

Before Wimbledon 2017, Sharapova is due to discover whether she will be granted a wildcard entry into the French Open later this month.

Meanwhile, Brook confirmed that two-time grand slam tennis champion Ilie Nastase won't be invited into the royal box at Wimbledon.

He is provisionally suspended following his conduct during Romania's Fed Cup tie with Great Britain.

Nastase verbally abused the team - and also made comments about Serena Williams' unborn child which have been described as "racist" by the player herself.

Brook said: "His actions were not very good and we condemn them but in terms of an invitation to the Royal Box, he's not going to receive an invitation this year. It's been reported to some extent already in the media but I can't confirm that to you all today."

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