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Florida Ties This Weekend at Wimbledon; Mal Washington Scholarships

July 1, 2011 09:15 AM
Florida Ties This Weekend in Wimbledon Late Rounds

Maria Sharapova
A number of Florida players remain in the mix this weekend as Wimbledon advances into the final rounds of singles and doubles.

The 24-year-old Maria Sharapova, who moved from Russia to Florida at age 7, will contend for her second career Wimbledon title against Czech Petra Kvitova on Saturday. The Bradenton, Fla., resident was only 17 when she captured her first title at the All England Club in 2004.

Sharapova is happy to be playing tennis at all after rotator cuff surgery in late 2008, a surgery which many pros fail to recover from.

"There were doubts," Sharapova said in a press conference, "because I had many expectations on when I would come back. I set myself certain goals. I never really met any of them, to be honest. There were many: when I wanted to come back, how I wanted to feel, where my pain level was. So that was frustrating. You're going to have certain doubts when you go through something like that knowing that not too many players have recovered fully."

Sharapova beat another Bradenton resident, German Sabine Lisicki, to reach the final.

In men's doubles the Bryan brothers, Bob and Mike, the world No. 1-ranked pair who train at Saddlebrook in Wesley Chapel, Fla., are on track for the final with a growing entourage.

This week golf legends Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman have been among their admirers in the stands and at their practice courts.

"I'm delighted to be able to come and see them play," said the Florida resident Nicklaus, speaking to USA Today. The 71-year-old has three lighted grasscourts at his home in North Palm Beach, and is a big doubles player, having hosted the Bryans on his home courts.

Lisicki is still alive in the women's doubles semifinals with partner Samanthat Stosur. The Bryans in the men's semifinals will play the No. 6 seeds Michael Llodra and Nenad Zimonjic. Bob Bryan and fellow American Liezel Huber are also alive in the mixed quarterfinals at the top seeds.

There are no U.S. boys remaining in singles or doubles in the Wimbledon junior draws, but three U.S. girls remaining in doubles: Lauren Herring, Boca Raton's Madison Keys, and Grace Min.

MaliVai Washington Kids Foundation Students Awarded College Scholarships

MWKF logoThe MaliVai Washington Kids Foundation this month awarded 18 students scholarships for college totaling $60,000. Individual scholarship amounts ranged from $1,000-8,000. Since its inception in 1997, MWKF (in partnership with other organizations including Take Stock in Children) has awarded over $500,000 of scholarship money to MWKF students.

Three Foundation scholarships of $5,000 each were awarded to Benzell Lang (10th Grade, Paxon School of Advanced Studies), named the George M. Sopher Student Athlete of the Year; Deshawn "Scotty" Brown (2011 graduate, Robert E. Lee High School, attending Tallahassee Community College), receiving the Rick Murray "Don't Quit" Scholarship; and Keanna Bell (2011 graduate, Stanton College Preparatory High School, attending Florida Atlantic University) who received the Charlie Rice "Fire Up" Scholarship.

Bell and Brown also received $8,000 scholarships from the Zoe Gaudet Scholarship Fund at the Community Foundation.

'Take Stock in Children' scholarships went to Esperanza Jointer (8th Grade, James Weldon Johnson) and Devon
James (8th grade Kirby Smith).

Extra Effort Scholarship winners received $1,000 in scholarship money were Ashton Scott (11th grade, Robert E. Lee); Bernard Thomas (7th grade, John E. Ford K-8); Tatiyana Roberts (8th grade, John E. Ford K-8); Trevonti Scott (8th grade, Kirby Smith); Shavonna Davis (6th grade, John E. Ford K-8); Sylver White (6th grade, Kirby Smith); Miskiya Donovan (7th grade, John E. Ford K-8); Jervonnie Moody (9th grade, Robert E. Lee ); Devon James (8th grade, Kirby Smith); Marquise Brown (9th grade, Paxon School for Advanced Studies); Rudolph McSwain (8th grade, John E. Ford K-8); Keyondra Merritt (7th grade, Mathew Gilbert); Fred Radford (9th grade, Wolfson); Mervin Nicholas (8th grade, Kirby Smith); and Savoux Alexander (7th grade, John E. Ford K-8).

Extra Effort Scholarship winners were nominated for putting forth extra effort in their scholastic achievements, community involvement and athletic endeavors.

All scholarship award winners will be recognized during the 15th Annual MaliVai Washington Golf & Tennis Gala with Merrill Lynch and Bank of America serving as title sponsors. The Merrill Lynch /Bank of America Golf & Tennis Gala will be held Sept, 12-13, 2011, in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. For ticket or additional info go to www.malwashington.com.






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