Connors to coach Sharapova

World number two Maria Sharapova, a stunning second-round loser at Wimbledon last month, has taken on eight-time Grand Slam winner Jimmy Connors as her new coach, she said on Saturday.

"I am happy to announce that Jimmy Connors will be my new coach," the 26-year-old Russian, a four-time major winner, posted on her website.

"I have known Jimmy for many years and we briefly worked together in 2008 just before the Australian Open. I am really excited about our new partnership and looking forward to the upcoming tournaments."

The Russian won the 2008 Australian Open, beating Ana Ivanovic of Serbia in the final in an all-conquering campaign in which she did not lose a set.

Sharapova, who was ousted at Wimbledon in straight sets by Michelle Larcher de Brito of Portugal, announced the coaching move two days after officially parting ways with Thomas Hogstedt, who had coached her the past three years.

Connors, 60, previously served a 19-month stint as coach for Andy Roddick from 2006 to 2008. Under his guidance, Roddick reached the final of the 2006 US Open and won five ATP titles.

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