Despite the injury, she was happy to be back on court.
Sharapova said she hopes to be fit to play in the October 25-Nov.
Similar in capacity to Wimbledon’s centre court, the new stadium is dwarfed only by the US Open’s Arthur Ashe stadium which has a capacity of 23,000. Yeah, I got pain in my left forearm.
Czech Kvitova, the world number four, won the inaugural Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Wuhan Open a year ago, and is joined for the 2015 edition by 18 of the world’s top 20.
Eugenie Bouchard withdrew from the tournament on Monday because of the concussion she sustained during the U.S. Open.
Sharapova is among a star-studded line-up for the $2.4 million hard court event, which was only established past year on the back of the success of China’s two-time Grand Slam victor Li Na, who was born and raised in Wuhan.
But in her home city of Wuhan she is a local hero and has been influential in the WTA tour’s growth in Asia.
Li now has plans to open her own tennis academy.
The WTA first Chinese office was opened in Beijing in 2008 and since then 10 professional women’s tournaments have taken root in mainland China.
The five-time Grand Slam champion only accepted a wild card entry into the Wuhan Open last week, and told reporters Saturday in Wuhan it is a “consolation prize for not playing the US Open”. “I haven’t played a match in many months”.
“Unfortunately it’s sad that Maria couldn’t finish the match because I thought it was a really good match”, Strycova said of her opponent.
Sharapova had been out with a persistent leg injury since July, when she lost a Wimbledon semi-final to Serena Williams, and pulled out of three events including the US Open. “There is not an easy match”, Sharapova said of the line up at Wuhan, where she is hoping to improve on her performance previous year, which saw her crash out in the third round against Swiss qualifier Timea Bacsinszky.