A rowdy crowd of 18,079 saw the welcome return of tennis to Madison Square Garden at Monday night’s BNP Paribas Showdown. Maria Sharapova and Caroline Wozniacki served up a quality first set, which Sharapova won 6-3, before allowing the match to run the course of a typical tennis exhibition.
There was dancing, there was giggling, and oh yes, there was top-ranked golfer Rory McIlroy getting summoned down to the court by his main squeeze to play a point against Sharapova. Maria, thankfully, did not take his head off. But she did lose the point, thus reinforcing a reputation that has stuck with her for some time now: Maria Sharapova does not fare well against current World No. 1s.
Sharapova eventually won the exhibition match 6-3, 6-4. See a clip of the dancing, giggling, McIlroy-ing action in the video below.