Sharapova Says Russians Will Continue To Dominate Women's Tennis In 2005
Updated: 08:16 AM EST
Sharapova says Russian domination of women's tennis set to continue
HONG KONG (AP) - Russia's domination of women's tennis is set to continue in 2005, although it will be hard to match the three Grand Slam titles the Russians won last year, Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova said Monday.
The 17-year-old Russian - in Hong Kong to compete in the four-day Women's Champions Challenge exhibition tournament - said last year was amazing for Russian tennis.
"2004 was beyond anybody's expectations for our country. We were in the mood to win and to get great results," said Sharapova, who defeated American Serena Williams in last year's Wimbledon final.
The blonde teenager said there was no secret why Russia has taken the women's game by storm. "We work hard at what we do. We take it as our job. Everybody wants to be No. 1 in the world."
Sharapova heads a world-class field at the Hong Kong tournament at Victoria Park that acts as a warm-up for this month's Australian Open in Melbourne.
Other Russians who will be competing in Hong Kong are U.S. Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova and Elena Dementieva.
The only top Russian missing is Anastasia Myskina, the French Open winner.
Four-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams of the United States and rising Czech player Nicole Vaidisova are also featured in the tournament.
01/03/05 08:15 EST
Copyright 2005 The Associated Press.