Former World No.1 Maria Sharapova, during a recent live Instagram chat with Novak Djokovic, recalled the time when the Serbian challenged the Russian in 2007 that if he won a particular match, she would have to take him out for dinner. The last time Novak Djokovic was in action, he had won the Dubai Tennis Championships in February 2020, while the Maria Sharapova retirement news not only shocked the players but fans as well in the same month.
During the chat, Maria Sharapova recalled the moment when both the players were indulged in a mixed doubles match. She said that when these two played in an exhibition game, both were young and she was not sure if Djokovic even won any tournament at that point. She further said that Djokovic had told her that he would pay for the dinner if she won, leaving her astounded.
During the chat, Maria Sharapova said that after the win, Novak Djokovic asked her out for dinner to a Japanese restaurant and she was left stunned by the gesture. She further said that both of them ended up going to dinner and it was so funny because Djokovic pulled out an old Kodak camera, asking the waiter to take a photo of them together. Sharapova claimed that Djokovic was a 'fanboy' to her back then.
Djokovic, after hearing the entire incident, admitted that the incident was true. He further went on to recall that he lost the camera and the photograph and jokingly asked Sharapova to admit that she lost it on purpose.
The Maria Sharapova retirement news made headlines after the Russian was knocked out early from the Australian Open. Following the Maria Sharapova retirement news, Novak Djokovic paid a classy tribute by saying that she was a fighter and had the willpower and willingness to overcome all the obstacles she had, especially with injuries and surgeries and trying to fight back, come back to the court and play on her desired level. He further said that Sharapova had a fantastic career and she can be proud of herself.
Looking back at Maria Sharapova's career, the Russian had been plagued by injuries, starting way back to 2008 when she underwent surgery on her shoulder. While she did make a return to the sport after a 15-month doping ban, she has only managed to reach one major quarter-final since her return, which, quite possibly, could have led to her calling time on her career.
(IMAGE: NOVAK DJOKOVIC/ MARIA SHARAPOVA/ INSTAGRAM)