"I'm extremely disappointed that I'm unable to play in Toronto next week as it's one of the best and most important tournaments of the year," Sharapova said. "I was looking forward to making a healthy return to the courts in front of my Canadian fans but unfortunately I'm just not recovered yet."
Sharapova's best result at the Rogers Cup came in 2009, when she was a runner-up to fellow Russian Elena Dementieva. But reaching the final that year was a feat in itself - just a few months after coming back from a shoulder surgery lay-off and ranked No.49 in the world, she beat a slew of top players - Nadia Petrova, Vera Zvonareva and Agnieszka Radwanska, who have all been in the Top 3 at some point, as well as former Top 20 players Sybille Bammer and Alisa Kleybanova - en route to the final.
As a gesture to her Canadian fans who were excited to see her live at the Rogers Cup, Sharapova has offered to fly two lucky winners to Los Angeles during the off-season for a private hit with her followed by lunch. She has donated her time for this money-can't-buy experience to also benefit Tennis Canada's "Let's Make Tennis Matter for Kids" campaign, as the prize will be auctioned off at Rogers Cup next week with all proceeds going to growing Kids Tennis participation across Canada.
"Maria Sharapova is one of the fan favorites here in Toronto and we are certainly going to miss her at Rogers Cup this year," said the Tournament Director of the Rogers Cup, Karl Hale. "We are very appreciative of her generosity in donating her time for us to raise some money for Kids Tennis.
"We wish her a speedy recovery and successful return to the tour as soon as possible."
Sharapova will still be in Toronto this Thursday for an appearance at Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens.