Maria Sharapova’s book “Unstoppable: My life so far” was officially released on Tuesday 12th September in New York by the Russian tennis player herself, who has written much about her rivalry against Serena Williams, who she has beaten only two times in 21 matches played.
It all started at the Champions Ball of the 2002 Wimbledon. When Serena arrived to the dinner, everyone welcomed her while Sharapova continued to sit down. ‘I wanted to get up, but my body just would not let me. It was as if I were stuck in that chair, staring at Serena through the crowd of people, with a single thought in my head: “I am going to get you.”‘ Their rivalry on court started at the 2004 Miami Open.
Sharapova understood straightaway it was to be a match like no other: ‘It was like yes, finally. It felt as if I’d been circling around her for years. It’s the whole thing — her presence, her confidence, her personality.
She seemed much older than me in Miami. This was just before I turned 17. She was a grown woman, experienced, the best player in the world. It still feels that way. Even now, she can still make me feel like a little girl.” But how is the relationship between them? Actually, not so good…
‘Serena and I should be friends: we love the same thing, we have the same passion. Only a few people in the world know what we know — what it feels like in the dead center of this storm, the fear and anger that drive you, how it is to win and how it is to lose.
But we are not friends — not at all. I think, to some extent, we have driven each other. Maybe that’s better than being friends. Maybe that’s what it takes to fire up the proper fury. Only when you have that intense antagonism can you find the strength to finish her off.
But who knows? Someday, when all this is in our past, maybe we’ll become friends. Or not. You never can tell.’
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