2-time French Open champ reminds: ‘There is also Sharapova’

first_imgLights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding Russia’s Maria Sharapova celebrates winning her second round match of the French Open tennis tournament against Croatia’s Donna Vekic in two sets 7-5, 6-4, at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, France, Thursday, May 31, 2018. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)PARIS — The topic was the location of Maria Sharapova’s upcoming third-round match at the French Open, and a reporter noted it likely will be at one of the tournament’s main arenas, given that it involves 2016 U.S. Open runner-up Karolina Pliskova.“Well,” came the rejoinder, “there is also Sharapova.”ADVERTISEMENT China population now over 1.4 billion as birthrate falls And she wasn’t at all shy about sizing things up against Sharapova, saying: “I believe I have (a) better serve than she (does), so I think that can be the deciding key.”Then there was this remark: “She can do a lot of mistakes … a lot of free points from double-faults.”After her 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 victory over 2015 French Open runner-up Lucie Safarova on Wednesday, Pliskova acknowledged she has been thinking about taking on Sharapova since the draw was done a week ago.“For me, it was the goal to play her in the third round,” Pliskova said, adding a few moments later: “I believe I have a good chance to win.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Dave Chappelle donates P1 million to Taal relief operations LATEST STORIES Winfrey details her decision to withdraw from Simmons film Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Jury of 7 men, 5 women selected for Weinstein rape trial When on-target, her strokes are among the best in the game. So is her grit.Those could both be tested Saturday against Pliskova, who is seeded No. 6 and was a semifinalist in Paris last year.Her top skill is her serve, which Sharapova knows will provide a test.“I don’t expect extremely long rallies against an opponent like that. But sometimes (that’s) not what it takes to win a match, and I think you have to kind of take care of your service games, and I have to serve better than I have been,” Sharapova said. “And take care of the return. But that side of the game, I feel, has improved in the last few months.”Pliskova is on pace to lead the WTA in aces for the fourth consecutive season.ADVERTISEMENT View comments MOST READ This was delivered with Sharapova’s chin resting on her right hand and was followed by a bit of a staredown, as if to say: Let’s not forget who you’re talking to here. The 31-year-old Russian has, after all, been ranked No. 1. She does, after all, own five major titles. And that total does, after all, include a pair from Roland Garros.She is playing in the clay-court Grand Slam tournament for the first time since 2015, though, and she advanced Wednesday by beating 50th-ranked Donna Vekic of Croatia 7-5, 6-4 to improve to 13-0 in the second round.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown“I don’t think there is ever, like, a perfect way to go into a match. I think you always have to feel that you’re improving and there are things that you’re working on, because that will always make you better,” the 28th-seeded Sharapova said. “There are a lot of things I feel I could have done better (in) the last two matches and I hope I will.”She missed the 2016 French Open while serving a doping suspension, then was denied a wild-card entry by the French tennis federation last year, when her ranking was too low to earn automatic entry. Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Call it a comeback: Serena Williams to 3rd Rd at French Open Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’last_img read more