Q. You seemed
quite aggressive from the start today. Was that part of
the game plan?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, it was. Then I kind of backed up,
let her back in the match literally. You know, I did a
really good job of that from the beginning. Definitely,
you know, when I do that, I feel really good about my
game. I just kind of stopped in the middle of the second
set and let her back in.
But, fortunately, I was able to get that break back.
Q. I know it isn't exactly the women's case, but how
do you feel about those guys playing more than 200 games
maybe? You think it should be decided by a tiebreaker?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, I'd be checking myself into the
local hospital at that point (smiling). It's pretty
incredible what they've done. I think at this point maybe
the rules will be changed at a certain point you're going
to have to play a tiebreaker.
It's an amazing effort at that point in the match to come
out and to be able to hit such powerful strokes and
serves and just keep doing it over and over. But over a
certain period of time, I think it takes a toll on your
body mentally and physically.
I mean, probably the rule will change, but you never
Q. If you ended up playing to 20 all...
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Which would never happen, probably
Q. If you had a different shoulder and the match went
on that long, would you want a tiebreaker or do you think
you're just going to play forever, this is how it goes?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I've personally never been in that
position, so it's tough for me to say.
But I think after playing for nine hours, you'd want to
settle it with a tiebreaker.
Q. Even when you were growing up and practicing, what
kind of would be the longest you played tennis
continuously, comparing it to the two guys on court?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Oh, they've played way beyond whatever
I've practiced or combined three or four days that I'm
still not at nine hours (laughter).
I mean, it's heroic. What can you say? It's pretty
incredible. To still have to go out there and know that
the match is not finished, it could still go on for
another 20, 40 games. I don't know.
Q. Are you completely fit now in your own mind? Are
you absolutely sure you're fit? How much has it taken for
you to get back to that position?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I think it's pretty tough to always say
you're fit and you feel great. I mean, we're professional
athletes. We don't wake up in the morning and say,
Everything feels perfect. Maybe when we're very young.
But at this point in our careers, when we play tennis on
a daily basis, we practice, we go play matches, it's
impossible to feel fit. That's the way it goes.
I mean, as far as physically and fitness wise, yeah, I
feel really good.
Q. I was thinking more of the surgery you had.
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, like I said in my previous
interviews, it feels a lot better than I did last year
when I was sitting here.
Q. When the ball's bouncing close to the baseline
around the brown spots, are you starting to get bad
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Just a few. Just a few. But that's
normal. It's to be expected. When we're practicing at
Aorangi, the courts are pretty chewed up. We're used to
Q. Do you feel the courts are playing fairly fast
because of the weather?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: The weather's certainly helping them.
When I played on the championship courts a few days ago
just as practice before the tournament started, they were
playing pretty slow. But it was kind of cloudy, not as
warm. So that's helping, for sure.
Q. There was a point in the second game of the second
set where your opponent went to the replay. It showed
that your shot landed a good foot inside the baseline.
She seemed to clearly think that either the technology
was malfunctioned or had shown the wrong replay. What was
your view of that?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I was pretty positive that that ball was
in. I challenged it right away before I even hit it. I
knew it was going in. The lines judge called it out after
she hit the ball. So I'm not even sure if she was clear
on her thoughts because my opponent had already hit the
ball and then had her long, then she called it.
But I knew that my ball was in.
Q. Do you generally trust the system a hundred
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah. That's why it's in place.
Q. Given the severity of your injury, the difficulty
of the comeback from that type of injury, how much do you
think about a possible future without tennis? What
options did you think about for the future?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Uhm, I mean, I've set up myself pretty
well for things that I can do after my tennis career. But
that never really crossed my mind 'cause I was always
gearing up to get back. You know, I've been fortunate to
do, uhm, and to work with different people in different
industries that have really made my life interesting and
fun and creative. Fashion and things like that.
Uhm, I would certainly explore that after my career.
Q. How special does it feel to reach the third round,
given what's happened to you over the last couple of
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, I knew that coming into this match
that last year, uhm, I was on the plane the next day
after I lost. So, uhm, I really thought about it,
especially towards the end of the match. I was really
excited to get through.
Q. Perhaps you didn't have a chance to see the Queen
because you were playing, but what do you think of the
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I think it's wonderful and so great for
our sport that she was able to, you know, take some time
from her really busy schedule and come out and just be a
part of Wimbledon, the tradition that we feel to be a
part of on a yearly basis.
To see her here and support it was great. I didn't get
the opportunity to meet her. Had a match to play. But, I
mean, I'm sure I'll see highlights of her watching the
match and it will be pretty cool to see.
Q. What do you think the importance of that Isner
match is to the sport? What effect do you think it will
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Well, it's amazing what they've done. I
think they've created some crazy news around the world,
which is great for the sport. Even for people that don't
have any interest in tennis, you know, I think they read
about it and see it and think how amazing it is. It's
wonderful for our sport.
Q. Putting yourself aside, it hasn't been a great year
for Russian women. Can you put your finger on it at all
or do you think things tend to be cyclical?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: We've been really fortunate with our
results over the years. To have so many girls in the top
10. To not have as many as we're used to, I mean, is
maybe a bit of a surprise.
But that's the way it goes. Hopefully that will be