On Court
1 On Court Sources: World Team Tennis

Sharapova to play World Team Tennis

Still bothered by the thigh injury she suffered in Rome, Maria Sharapova is missing the grass-court season. She plans to be back at the WTA event in Stanford the last week of July, then the Rogers Cup in Toronto (both on wild cards). To get some match play (in a different format), she will join the Orange Country breakers of World Team Tennis at home on July 24, and in San Diego on July 16. Sharapova played WTT quite a lot early in her career, starting in 2002. But she hasn't played since 2010.

2 On Court Sources: Mallorca Open

Kerber preps for Eastbourne – in Mallorca

With qualifying going on all weekend, no doubt there was a serious dearth of practice courts at the joint ATP/WTA tournament in Eastbourne. So Angelique Kerber, who took a wild card at Eastbourne after withdrawing from the Mallorca Open this week with a hamstring injury, was smart to go to Mallorca to get some grass reps in. There was no need to work on the tan; it's already bitchin'. She might have saved herself a withdrawal fine, too, if she did some PR.  Rafael Nadal has been practicing there all week.

3 On Court Sources: Tennis.Life

Foot puts Svitolina’s Wimbledon in doubt

It wasn't so much that Elina Svitolina lost in the second round at Birmingham to Camila Giorgi Thursday. The bigger-picture issue was a foot problem. "I think I will have one week preparation for Wimbledon. But for me, I don't want to endanger the end of the season. So that's why it's very tough to think about Wimbledon," Svitolina said after the loss. "It feels very painful on the foot because I need to walk, you know, sometimes," she added. "All the time I stand up on the feet, it's painful."  

4 On Court Sources: Tennis.Life

Goffin takes wild card into Umag

David Goffin couldn't be ready in time for Wimbledon. But he plans to be ready for Umag. The Belgian, whose French Open ended with a nasty slip on a court cover that caused an ankle injury, missed the entire grass-court season. It's encouraging news that he plans to be back for the ATP Tour event in Umag, Croatia, which takes place the week after Wimbledon. He's been given a wild card. There's plenty of season still to go – including the jam-packed North American summer with two Masters 1000 tournaments, plus the US Open.

5 On Court Sources: WTA Tour

Ankle injury forces Coco retirement

After a comprehensive upset of Johanna Konta in the previous round, American Coco Vandeweghe was on her way to another possible impressive win, over Garbiñe Muguruza, Friday when she went over on her ankle. After losing the second set, she retired from the match. With Wimbledon so close, no one is taking any risks. The WTA Tour's highlights are a bit of a mess these days. The fall happened at 2-1 in the second set. But their package doesn't even show it. You can see it here.

Off Court
1 Off Court Sources: Instagram

Dreddy and Hali Kyrgios – old news!

A lot of people were surprised when cult hero Dustin Brown posted a pic with his girlfriend on Instagram. He didn't name her, but tennis fans instantly noted her resemblance to Halimah, the 28-year-old actress sister of Nick Kyrgios. It's her! But it's not new. A tennis.life Enquirer-style investigation has disclosed the two have been an item since the 2015 US Open.  They were together when Brown faced Kyrgios at Wimbledon last year. Somehow, it never hit the British tabloid radar. She wasn't on hand to see little bro win the dramatic five-setter, though.

2 Off Court Sources: Tennis.Life

Venus stumps for healthy choices in Oz

Before Wimbledon, Venus Williams snuck a quick trip – well, not so quick – to Australia to headline a summit hosted by AIA Australia. The major life insurance company put together a lineup of health and wellness experts to address what they consider Australia's biggest threat: 4490. The four sectors the 4490 name refers to are diet, exercise, alcohol consumption and smoking. The CEO of the company says poor choices in those areas contribute to "the four major non-communicable diseases in Australia." "It’s about finding a balance and living the life you want to live," Williams said.

3 Off Court Sources: Tennis.Life

But Seriously, Johnny Mac has a new book

Some 15 years after his first memoir, "You Cannot Be Serious", John McEnroe has a follow-up entitled "But Seriously" out next week. (Should there be a comma in there?) From an advance review in the Daily Mail, it seems the 58-year-old will annoy many – especially women – with his new collection of musings. McEnroe, who makes a nice living punditing during Wimbledon for the BBC, says the tournament is "so full of itself". He says the women's grunting is "so high it's incredibly annoying", but the men are okay. And those are just two anecdotes.

4 Off Court Sources: UCFKnights.com

UCF goes all un-American in ’17

It's got to be hard for American coaches who work with juniors to convince them college tennis is a viable route, whether to the pros or to life. Either that, or they're doing a poor job. University of Central Florida head coach John Roddick announced the 2017 incoming men's class Friday. Five players in all will join the team at the Orlando-based campus – and there isn't a single American among them. They hail from Brazil, Ukraine, Mexico, Russia and ... Finland. Among the 12-man roster for 2016-17 were eight Americans. Quite a change.

5 Off Court Sources: HBO Sports, Tennis.Life

Tiafoe gets Real Sports treatment

The rising young American was interviewed by Mary Carillo for a segment on the HBO sports magazine Real Sports. It aired on Thursday. Tiafoe said he would tap the ball against the wall for hours on end. "I thought every rep I got, I felt I was getting better," Tiafoe said. By age 8 or 9, he would pretend to be facing his favourite player, Juan Martin del Potro. A decade later, there he was, practicing with him at Indian Wells. It looked like the two really hit it off, too. Dreams do come true.