23 JUNE 2008

The sigh of disappointment from Maria Sharapova's male admirers was almost audible at Wimbledon. The leggy Russian champion surprised fans more used to seeing their heroine in diamond-studded sportswear and Swan Lake-inspired tennis whites by announcing plans to "debut" a new toned down look for this year's championship.

"Believe it or not, I'm going to be wearing men's shorts," teased world number two Maria, who wore a blue pair during a practice session on Sunday. "Call it menswear. It's kind of a tuxedo look, very simple lines, classic."

While Maria kept supporters guessing about her choice of outfits for the tournament with her tongue-in-cheek remarks, one thing was certain - she's back on winning form. In January the 21-year-old took her third Grand Slam title at the Australian Open and she's out to take back the number one spot from Serbian Ana Ivanovic.

Photo: ©
The power that helped make Maria Wimbledon champion in 2004 was very much in evidence during a knockabout on Sunday. But unlike previous occasions when she's worn head-turning dresses to compete, the tennis ace has been teasing fans that she'll wear shorts for the entire tournament Photo: © Getty ImagesClick on photo to enlarge
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