Join Date: Mar 2009
Re: ** Masha News and Articles! ** Vol. 2
M. SHARAPOVA/Y. Chan
6 2, 6 3
Q. Can we say you were totally in control today?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, I felt like I was in control most of the match. I only got broken once I believe in the second set, and I served really well throughout the match. You know, I took my chances when I had them.
So, yeah, I was quite pleased after playing a three set match that I had a quicker one today.
Q. So you've got Radwanska. You've played her a number of times, I think only once on clay, though, Istanbul. But she's obviously a tough out on clay. She moves well, gets a lot of balls back. You want to just talk about that?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, it will be a really tough match because I think this is one of her best surfaces. She's a really good mover and moves well on clay and gets a lot of balls back, and just be important to be aggressive and look for my opportunities to move forward.
Q. So is there any shot you're really not confident in right now?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I think I can still be a little bit more aggressive. I definitely feel like some balls I was a little bit late today.
But, yeah, just looking to move forward a little bit more.
Q. You had a very long injury to the shoulder some time ago. I wanted to know how it is difficult to live eight months without playing tennis. Do you have time to think for the first time to the life behind tennis? How did you live that time?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, it definitely opens your eyes and you see things from a different view, because usually when you're waking up every single morning everything is on autopilot; that you're going to wake up and put my Nike clothes on and go and train. It's a routine. And then you have a tournament.
So when you don't have that for a long time, you, you know definitely opens your eyes and you start thinking a little bit.
I missed it a lot, and I wanted to get back to it as quickly as I could.
Q. Do you think that your amazing comeback that you did against Garcia, do you think that it added some kind of self confidence to what you might do here in Roland Garros; that maybe this might be the year where you'll be more successful than the others? Has it given you any extra belief?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: You know, I was just really happy to come back, you know, from that, from the position that I was in. I certainly wasn't thinking, Oh, if I come back in this match and I end up winning it's going to give me so much confidence.
You just try to fight for every point in order to win the match. And then when you do, you have the next match ahead of you, and that keeps going.
Every day is different, and you face different opponents. And you can never be overly confident, because if you are, then I don't think you push yourself, you motivate yourself enough, you know.
Q. You're obviously getting deep into a run at a slam, but if you could step back and just talk about women's tennis in general. A lot of developments are going on. Older players, a lot of upsets, near upsets, no dominant player. Fewer Americans. Can you give us a sense of what your read is?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I honestly don't know. I have enough trouble focusing and knowing what's on my agenda and my schedule.
You know, I'm mostly just selfishly worrying about myself and just trying to win matches. It's tough to focus on what's going on around you and whether, you know, someone's on a comeback or playing well or losing or what.
It's really none of my business, to be honest.
Q. Well, in terms of your business, do you think now that you've been on the circuit for a good while and a lot of ups and downs, do you think this experience is really kicking in and is a significant plus at this point?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Well, it's definitely beneficial, because I know no matter what position I am in my career, I have the experience. I've been on the tour many years. I have played many matches. I've won some. I've lost tough ones. I've won tough ones.
I look back to that, and I know that I have that in my mind when I'm playing current matches. That helps me a lot.
So it's certainly helpful to have, you know, big wins at Grand Slams and to have tough losses from which I've come back and made myself stronger. You learn a lot from before.
Q. Patty Schnyder called an end to her career today. Can you comment on her impact in tennis in general and maybe about your experiences with her?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, she gave me lots of trouble. She did. She had a nasty left hander everything. I remember playing a tough match against her here, I think. I don't know if she had a couple of match points or something, but it was one of the early rounds at Roland Garros.
Especially when I was younger, she just played this cat and mouse game, and sometimes you just felt like the silly mouse.
No, she gave me tough ones. And she's had a really long career. I mean, when I was young and coming up, she was actually in the top 10, top 20 or something. Yeah.
Q. Before what you did in Rome, would you have expected to get into the second week here looking so strong, feeling so confident?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Um, I mean, you plan on it, because that's where you want to be. I just plan on trying to win my next match, whether that's before my first round, my second, before the second week or whatever it is.
Q. You have changed your racquet and you have changed your long time coach in the beginning of this year, and looks like you are really eager to win another slam or to come back to No. 1. In order to do that, I assume you have made top 10 a decision. Could you talk a little bit about that?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, I made a couple of changes. I switched racquets in November, which I was very happy about. It was one of the first few racquets I picked up and I loved from the first ball I hit with it, and I knew I would be making that switch.
As far as the coaching, yeah, it was definitely a tough change, because I worked with Michael Joyce for almost seven years. You know, he was a really good friend of mine.
I had a certain routine. After a really long time when that changes, it's tough to mentally make that big of a change to say I'm going to go for something different. But I think it was the right thing. I needed a new perspective. Yeah.
Q. Rafael Nadal said earlier today he is 24 but feels like he's been playing on the tour for 100 years. How do you feel to that regard?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Well, I'm sure he said that because we even though maybe we started playing professionally, I think I did when I was 14 or something, and we started playing tennis from a very young age, and, you know, we've done this for almost all our lives, so we feel like we're on this sort of hamster carousel and we just keep going. It's true.
I think that's why it feels like every year we come back and, you know, like, Oh, nothing changes, and next year you come back, Oh, nothing changes. Same old same press conference room, same court, same people. Yeah. I think that makes you feel old.