Sick Sharapova withdraws from Italian Open

ROME Fri May 17, 2013 7:59am EDT

Maria Sharapova of Russia hits a return to Sloane Stephens of the U.S. during their women's singles match at the Rome Masters tennis tournament May 16, 2013. REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi

Maria Sharapova of Russia hits a return to Sloane Stephens of the U.S. during their women's singles match at the Rome Masters tennis tournament May 16, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Alessandro Bianchi

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ROME (Reuters) - Maria Sharapova withdrew from the Italian Open before her quarter-final with Italy's Sara Errani on Friday because of "physical problems", organizers said.

The Russian is set to defend her French Open title later this month.

Italian Open officials did not elaborate further on the reasons for Sharapova's Rome exit but the 26-year-old said on her Twitter account she was sick.

"I'm sorry for having to withdraw from the tournament this morning. Didn't recover after being sick last week and it got me again last night," Sharapova tweeted.

"It really is one of my favorites tournaments during the year and I can't wait to be back next year."

(Reporting by Eric Salliot; Writing by Julien Pretot; Editing by Justin Palmer and Alison Wildey)

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