Skip to main content

Sharapova overpowers Errani to win French Open

June 9, 2012 -- Updated 1943 GMT (0343 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Maria Sharapova beats Sara Errani to win French Open final
  • Russian completes collection of all four grand slam titles
  • Saturday's victory is Sharapova's first grand slam win since 2008
  • The 25-year-old will be world No. 1 in the new rankings issued next week

(CNN) -- Maria Sharapova overpowered Sara Errani to win the French Open final at Roland Garros for the first time and complete a career grand slam.

The 2012 tournament's surprise package, Italian Errani never came up with an answer to Sharapova's strategy of power and unerring ball placement as the Russian produced 37 winner to secure a 6-3 6-3 victory.

As Sharapova motored into a 4-0 lead in the opening set the final looked as it might be over in the blink of an eye, but Errani got her toe in the match by breaking Sharapova's serve to win the fifth game.

Sharapova: It's a special victory
Maria Sharapova wins 2012 French Open
Hantuchova expects Sharapova victory
Sharapova ready for tough clay challenge
Li Na was disappointed after suffering a surprise defeat in the fourth round of the French Open against Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan. Li Na was disappointed after suffering a surprise defeat in the fourth round of the French Open against Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan.
Defending champion departs
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
>
>>
Li Na exits French Open Li Na exits French Open
Maria Sharapova has come a long way since turning professional on her 14th birthday in April 2001, having played the game since she was four years old. Maria Sharapova has come a long way since turning professional on her 14th birthday in April 2001, having played the game since she was four years old.
The Sharapova story
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
>
>>
Maria Sharapova\'s French Open dream Maria Sharapova's French Open dream

Errani, who is ranked 23rd in the world, showed plenty of grit to save two set points in the eighth game, but when a third set point came up in the following game Sharapova ruthlessly converted.

Italy's Errani refused to capitulate in the second set, but was never able to threaten the Russian's dominance.

As well as strength, Sharapova's quickness of feet was a feature of an impressive performance, notably when she sprinted to reach an Errani drop shot, winning the point to take a 4-1 lead.

Errani saved two match points in a game that the Italian produced a couple of the deftest drop shots you could wish for, but the Italian's resistance was finally ended when the Russian converted her third championship point.

It was the 25-year-old Russian's first grand slam title since she won the Australian Open in 2008.

Since then Sharapova's career has been hampered by serious shoulder injuries that forced her into a long rehab, but her winning form at Roland Garros will also see the Russian move above Belorussian Victoria Azarenka to take the No. 1 ranking slot on Monday.

Saturday's victory ensured Sharapova became just the 10th female player to complete a career grand slam to emulate the the likes of greats such as Steffi Graf, Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King, Chris Evert and Serena Williams.

The Russian won her first grand slam title at Wimbledon eight years ago, before going on to win the US Open in 2006 and then then Australian Open four years ago.

"It's the most incredible feeling," said Sharapova after her win in Paris. "I'm so happy. I've worked so hard for this -- it took a lot to get to this stage and even more to win it. There are so many tough days where you feel like giving up, but you don't. It's been such a journey to get to this stage again."

If Errani's impressive performances at Roland Garros -- featuring wins over two former champions and two members of the top 10 -- might not have had a fairytale ending, those rankings will provide some consolation for the Italian as she enters the top 10 for the first time.

"I don't feel like top 10, but I will be top 10, and it's incredible for me," said Errani, who made only only hit 11 unforced errors during the final. "I really can't believe it. I'm so happy for everything right now."

Victor Sharapova made a point of praising Errani's achievement in reaching the final.

"What an amazing tournament," said the Russian. "I've watched you play the last two weeks and the way you've performed. And the way you played today was extremely difficult for me. I know it was our first meeting, and I hope we play many more times."

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
December 16, 2014 -- Updated 1208 GMT (2008 HKT)
Rafael Nadal of Spain watches the ball in his match against Martin Klizan of Slovakia during during day seven of the China Open at the National Tennis Center on October 3, 2014 in Beijing, China.
Rafael Nadal's body might be giving him a few problems, but his mind remains as strong as ever. Will the Spaniard add to his haul of 14 grand slam titles?
November 24, 2014 -- Updated 1342 GMT (2142 HKT)
A year that began in uncertainty for Roger Federer ended with a historic title for the 17-time grand slam champion and his country.
November 27, 2014 -- Updated 1716 GMT (0116 HKT)
The Scot has served up a few changes to his support team in 2014 but there's one person who isn't going anywhere -- his new fiancée Kim Sears.
September 11, 2014 -- Updated 1248 GMT (2048 HKT)
French Tennis player Rene Lacoste, one of France's 'Four Musketeers' who won the Davis Cup in 1932, at Wimbledon. He is wearing his embroidered crocodile motif. Original Publication: People Disc - HH0434 (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)
His distinctive crocodile logo is seen on clothing all over the world, but Rene Lacoste also left a lasting legacy in the development of tennis.
September 9, 2014 -- Updated 0636 GMT (1436 HKT)
Marin Cilic follows in the footsteps of his coach Goran Ivanicevic by claiming a grand slam crown for Croatia, winning the U.S. Open.
September 14, 2014 -- Updated 1334 GMT (2134 HKT)
Serena Williams of the US holds the US Open trophy after defeating Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark during their US Open 2014 women's singles finals match at the USTA Billie Jean King National Center September 7, 2014 in New York. AFP PHOTO/Stan HONDA (Photo credit should read STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Serena Williams is without peer in the modern women's game and now she is on a par with two American tennis legends from the past.
September 2, 2014 -- Updated 1321 GMT (2121 HKT)
American tennis player and golfer Althea Gibson (right) receives a kiss from compatriot Darlene Hard, whom she beat in two sets to become the first black woman to win the Women's Singles Finals at Wimbledon.
Over the course of her remarkable life, Althea Gibson was many things to many people -- but it was tennis where she really left her mark.
August 27, 2014 -- Updated 1145 GMT (1945 HKT)
Canada and tennis? Really? Yup. The North American tennis power balance is swinging away from the States.
August 21, 2014 -- Updated 1252 GMT (2052 HKT)
As a player he was as fiery as his hair -- and as Novak Djokovic's coach, Boris Becker says he has to battle to keep his emotions in check.
August 20, 2014 -- Updated 1102 GMT (1902 HKT)
Tennis great Boris Becker says he was stunned by the level of criticism he received after being appointed as Novak Djokovic's coach.
July 25, 2014 -- Updated 1101 GMT (1901 HKT)
"I didn't cry once when I practiced in front of the mirror," says Martin Emmrich. But the nerves kicked in when he got down on one knee on court.
June 30, 2014 -- Updated 1135 GMT (1935 HKT)
When Agnieszka Radwanska refused to look her opponent in the eye after losing at Wimbledon, it raised more than eyebrows.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 0114 GMT (0914 HKT)
It's 10 years since a teenage Maria Sharapova became the darling of Wimbledon's hallowed Center Court, launching herself as a star.
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 0746 GMT (1546 HKT)
He's regularly voted France's favorite famous person, but many of the nation's youth have "no idea" about his glorious sporting past
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 1555 GMT (2355 HKT)
Five-time grand slam champion Martina Hingis has followed her mom into a coaching role, setting up a new tennis academy in Barcelona, Spain.
ADVERTISEMENT