Wimbledon semi-finalist Maria Sharapova is acutely conscious of her status as favorite to grab her second career title at the All England Club, but insists she is not feeling under pressure.
Twenty-four-year-old Sharapova is older and more experienced than the other three players remaining in the draw, who are all 21 years old and have never tasted Grand Slam success.
“Seriously, I don’t think that some two or three years mean so much,” Maria told Sovetsky Sport newspaper. “Yes, it turns out that I'm more experienced, primarily because my first big achievements came to me at an early age. I don’t regret it even for a second. But if I won my first titles at an older age – not at 17 – then maybe you wouldn’t have called me a veteran, but considered me a young talent instead.”
Germany’s rising tennis star Sabine Lisicki will face off against the Russian in the semi-final.
“She plays flat and very powerful. She also has a great serve. I think she has one of the fastest serves on the tour at the moment and it gives you some advantage on grass,” she said.
Sharapova won Wimbledon in 2004 and believes she has improved psychologically since then.
“It is clear that I have earned more experience. I remember my semi-final against [Lindsay] Davenport in 2004. I lost the first set and was 3-1 down in the second. At the time, I was already thinking that soon I’ll fly home. But I was already happy to be in the semi-finals. Now I'm always fighting to the final ball and I know that the semi-final isn’t the last match of the tournament,” Maria said.
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