Maria Sharapova is injured ... now let her carry the flag

Nick Friedell

Maria Sharapova will not be able to compete in Beijing, but I have a way that she can still be involved with the Games though.

Let her carry Russia's flag during the opening ceremonies.

The Russian tennis chief caused a controversy earlier this summer when he said that Sharapova would not be allowed to carry the country's flag during the ceremonies, for fear that she would be too tired to compete in her matches if she spent four hours standing in the sun with the flag.

I thought that was completely ridiculous the first time I heard it and I still do.

Sharapova's injury gives the Russians a way to make things right again though. If she carries the flag in Beijing there will be millions of eyes focused on her, meaning millions of eyes will be foucused on the Russian flag as well.

It's a win-win situation for everybody.

Sharapova gets to do what she wanted to do all along in carrying the flag, and the Russians get even more publicity than they could have dreamed of during the first night of the Olympics.

So turn that frown upside down Maria, this idea could work.

In the meantime, keep practicing that pose.

Only this time instead of the racket, pretend you're carrying the flag.