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Monday, January 16, 2006

Maria confident heading into season

Q: What is new about you and your game coming into 2006?
A: I am really looking forward to the upcoming season and have been working especially hard on my fitness. I also am playing with a new racket ... a new frame from Prince, the O3 White, that helps me to get the racket through the air faster and quicker.

Maria Sharapova

Q: Do those things give you a confidence boost?
A: Definitely. ... If I can get the racket through the air faster, I get more spin and more power.

Q: Women's tennis is very deep and talented at the top, and all of the top players are in Melbourne. There hasn't been one dominant player recently, so do you think this tournament is wide open? How do you assess your chances?
A: I think anything can happen. Everyone is playing well, and I am just looking forward to getting out and playing and starting the season. ... There are a lot of strong players, and being the first big tournament of the season, everyone will be focused and ready to play.

Q: What are your expectations for the year?
A: To be happy and healthy.



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