August 30, 2017 / 2:52 PM / 2 years ago

Sharapova back in the spotlight at U.S Open

Aug 28, 2017; New York, NY, USA; Maria Sharapova of Russia reacts after beating Simona Halep of Romania in Ashe Stadium on day one at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Maria Sharapova returns to action at the U.S. Open on Wednesday against Hungary’s Timea Babos, looking to prove she has the stamina to back up her opening-round win against Simona Halep.

Back on the grand slam scene after a 15-month doping ban, the Russian defeated the world number two and has since been tipped as a tournament favorite.

Hers will be the third match of the day in Arthur Ashe Stadium, where Canadian Eugenie Bouchard, who has an ongoing lawsuit against the U.S. Tennis Association over a locker room accident in 2015, opens proceedings with a first-round clash with Russian Evgeniya Rodina.

Play on outdoor courts was disrupted by rain on Tuesday, forcing organizers to reshuffle the schedule but Wednesday is expected to be a sunny day at Flushing Meadows.

Former champion and crowd favorite Venus Williams kicks off the later session against France’s Oceane Dodin. The American won the tournament in 2000 and 2001.

Another former champion, Argentine Juan Martin del Potro, starts his campaign on Arthur Ashe against Swiss Henri Laaksonen.

Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Christian Radnedge

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