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Saturday, March 12, 2005

Maria chases No.1 spot

IF tennis beauty Maria Sharapova wins the Pacific Life Open at Indian Wells and the Nasdaq-100 Open in Miami in three weeks' time, she will have a good chance of taking over from Lindsay Davenport as world No.1.

The spotlight will then shine even more brightly on the Wimbledon champion, who will become the first Russian female to go top of the rankings. "When I was younger and getting attention, it seemed I was in the spotlight all the time,"Maria Sharapova, 17, said today. "People were expecting the best from me and they thought I would be the best. But I knew there was going to be a difference between thinking you are the best and actually being the best. "Now that I'm (world) No.3 and up there, I feel I deserved those compliments. "The No.1 ranking doesn't cross my mind every day. If I keep winning, I'll move up the rankings. As long as I'm winning, I'm in good hands."

Maria Sharapova

Maria Sharapova has maintained this season the form that won her Wimbledon and the WTA Tour Championships in 2004, claiming back-to-back titles in Tokyo and Doha. The teenager has a 13-1 win-loss record this year, including victories over Davenport, Australia's Alicia Molik and fellow countrywoman Svetlana Kuznetsova. Her one defeat, by a 2-6 7-5 8-6 margin, came at the hands of eventual champion Serena Williams in the semi-finals of the Australian Open after Maria apova had held three match points. "I didn't take my opportunities," said Maria, who starts her Pacific Life Open campaign on Saturday against American Angela Haynes or Italy's Mara Santangelo.

"You have to take chances in tennis and if you don't, you lose. Serena has all the experience in the world but I'm getting there." Maria said the defeat hurt, although she was able to shrug it aside by going on a shopping spree the next day. "It's called retail therapy," she joked. The young Russian was surprised she was unable to close the match out and is hoping to avoid making a habit of it in the future. "There are a lot of matches I've looked back at that were so devastating to lose when they happened," said Maria. "But now I look back and say it was good to lose a match because I'm a better player because I learned from them." The tall blonde has seen her celebrity grow in leaps and bounds since she won Wimbledon and is refusing to allow her off-court appearances to distract her. "I've always wanted to be a top player," Maria said. "That's been my dream.
"But what comes with it can be celebrity and even if it has nothing to do with tennis, it's part of what I do, I have to accept it. "If I don't want to be a tennis player, I wouldn't have to accept these things and be that level of celebrity. It's something that comes with sport."



At 15/3/05 00:24, Anonymous nick said...

If Maria wins Pacific Life Open and Nasdaq-100 she will be #1(Duh). I think she will be #1 for a long time if she wins those tournments. But even if she does win LindsayDavenportwill comeback. but someone will knock Maria out of the #1 positon. But I think Maria should not think about the #1 one positon and just have fun. Kick ass maria

At 15/3/05 00:34, Anonymous nick said...

didn't mean anything by kick ass

At 15/3/05 00:34, Anonymous nick said...

didn't mean anything by kick ass

At 15/3/05 00:34, Anonymous nick said...

didn't mean anything by kick ass

At 26/4/05 05:07, Blogger FrogMaN said...



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