Maria Sharapova Curated
Russian tennis player
CURATED BY :
What was the reason behind your writing your book ‘Unstoppable’?
What was the contribution of your father to your tennis in your early days?
How do you think saying ‘no’ today can build a better tomorrow?
How did your father’s motivation help you to fight back the odds and win in the 2004 Wimbledon semi-final?
How has being with different coaches helped you in different points of your career?
How did you deal with losing a strong service game after sustaining an injury?
How did your father’s lessons helped you to select a support team that would be most helpful to you?
How have you been able to develop such a professional attitude towards what you do?
Do you think greatness, in a player, is seen when they are not playing well and still winning?
How do you think you have turned your obstacles into opportunities?
What does success mean to you?
Why did you decide to write a book?
How had the Chernobyl incident affected your life, back in the time when you lived in Russia?
What did your first coach mean to you and to your development at an early age?
How is your book less about you and more about your father?
What does your normal morning routine comprise?
What is favorite place in the world?
As you believe in retail therapy, what is the favorite thing you bought post defeat?
What is your favorite restaurant in the world?
What is your favorite dessert?
What is your favorite song to dance to?
If you hadn’t become a tennis professional what other career would you have pursued?
Is there an athlete you admire, outside of tennis?
What is your opinion about the comeback of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in 2017?
What are the top three things you are most proud of in your life?
What was it like for a 6-year old you to not have your mother around in the house, when you came to U.S.A?
How and why do you think you were different from the rest of the girls in your early days?
What do you think is the best product or brand you have endorsed?
What is the last book you read?
What is your favorite pass time?
What is your secret snack?
What item would you like to get your hand on if it went up for auction?
What is the last movie you saw in theatres?
Do you have any hidden talents?
What charitable cause is dear to your heart?
Where do you want to go that you have never been?
What is something that you have not accomplished yet, but would want to accomplish in the future?
If you got a chance to go to Hogwards, into which house would you like to be sorted?
Which match is the most unforgettable match of your career?
Which tournament do you think has the best facilities?
From where does your unstoppable drive comes?
How did you react to the news of an early lift of ban?
How difficult was the two year suspension for you?
Were you in a state of denial and shock when you got the mail of suspension from the International Tennis Federation?
Do you consider the substance, for which you were banned, to be a performance enhancer?
Why do you think you along with any member of your team had no knowledge of you taking a substance that was notified as banned by the ITF?
When ITF themselves cleared you of any ill-motive behind your taking the substance, do you think a 24-month ban was justified?
Do you think that by banning you the ITF was trying to set an example for other players, who might knowingly or unknowingly get involved in drug usage?
Do you think the people who you expected to support you during the time of your ban, actually didn’t support you?
Did your sponsors and endorsers stand by you when the news of your ban broke out?
If your ban would have been for 2 years or 4 years don’t you think your career would have been over?
How did you get discovered at an early age my Martina Navaratilova, who was herself a professional tennis player?
When did you know that you have the ability to become a great tennis player?
How have you kept yourself occupied during the15-month break?
Were you optimistic from the start that ITF may reduce your ban-period, since they have done it in the past?
Do you think it would be rightful to define you as a person who is tough in the face of adversities?
Do you think another player with the strength of her game intimidate you in the same way as you have done with your opponents in the past?
After having won all the Grand Slams, what other tennis goals do you want to achieve?
What did it mean to you to have the support of the number 1 male tennis player in the world, Novak Djokovic, when the ban was imposed on you?
Were you able to accept the 15-month, unjustified ban imposed on you by the ITF as your misfortune?
What are the lessons that you have learned from the ban that was imposed on you by the ITF?
Why do you start your book with a quote from Nelson Mandela?
How do you handle criticism?
Why do you not want to think about leaving a legacy at this point in your career?
What are the things that give you the push to play?
Why is winning every tournament, every match, so important to you?
What do you think you had as a professional tennis player that made you stand out in the crowd?
Can you share an incident from your childhood where you showed great amount of tenacity and ressilience?
How has repetition created discipline in your life and how have you leveraged it in your career?
How did your father become so much determined that he made really hard choices for the sake of your development in your childhood days?
What is a trait in your father that is immensely motivating?
How did the isolation in your early years helped to develop you as a professional you are today?
How much do you use the intimidation factor in your game to your advantage?
What is one strength which is most valuable to you?
How do you become so indomitable on the court?
Why would you not want your daughter to play tennis?
If you could live in a world where your physicality never detoriates, how long would you play tennis?
What is your vision for your business post-tennis?
What is the impact that you want to have on the world?
How was your experience playing for a charity event organized by Elton John, in front of a crowd after a big break?
How relaxing had it been for you when the ITF shortened the ban period, imposed on you, by 9 months?
How has the period away from tennis, when you were banned, different from the time when you were injured?
What are a few things you learned from the time away from the game?
Being the superstar you are, what is something about you that makes you a normal person?
What do you think is the biggest internal difficulty you have faced?
What are the biggest lessons that each one of your parents have taught you?
What does having a mental edge over your opponents mean to you?
In what programme did you participate, in Harvard Business School and how was it different from the tennis-court?
What were the things that you learned from your case study at Harvard Business School?
What are the different businesses you have and why?
How are you able to manage doing different things at the same time?
Why are you so driven to win, even after achieving so much?
Do you have any regrets about things that you couldn’t do or achieve along the way?
What would it take from you to have best of all the worlds?
Do you have mental practice that you do before you go out on the court?
What do you think it is about athletes not doing well after they retire?
How do you think you are different from most athletes who fall into depression when something bad happens to their lives?
What would you say are your fears?
Are their any questions you would want people to ask?
For what are you most grateful in your life?
What would be the three most important truths or lessons by which you want the world to remember you?
What was the reason behind the grunting noise you make?
What did it mean to you to defeat Simona Halep, the no. 2 seeded player in 2017 US Open, which was your comeback year?
Why does the Wimbledon 2004 finals has been an important match in your rivalry with Serena Williams?
How do you deal with people criticizing candy brands?
“I Understand the criticism of my product. However, I am an athlete who knows what is health and what is not healthy for my body. Health is one of my biggest priorities as a professional athlete. On the other hand, everyone likes sweets, including me."
How do you recall your childhood memories ?
“I was very lonely. Also miss my mom a lot. To be able to see me, my father always had to work hard so he could get back home early before I fell asleep. I always received insults and more treatment than others, though I did it to pursue all my dreams with enthusiasm. Because of that, I learned how to take care of myself. I also never thought about quitting because I knew what I wanted.”
Are you working out alone to indulge yourself in the lockdown?
I am not used to working out alone without any guidance or energy from trainers and athletes being in the same room.
Have you made any workout routines?
In the past seven weeks, I've formed a good little routine at home with Tracy Anderson.
Why are you retiring from professional tennis at age 32?
I look at photos of myself and of the motion where I’m just about to hit the ball, and I’m in the air or just as I’m making contact and I can’t even look at it because it makes me cringe. I have so much pain.
What is your greatest strength?
As I think you’ve seen throughout my career, my perseverance has been my greatest tool, my greatest strength.
Is perseverance also your weakness?
But I’ve started feeling like it was becoming a weakness, because the stubbornness that was keeping me going was keeping me going for wrong reasons.
How have you been caring for your body for the last six months?
Fourteen hours of my day in the last six months have been just, like, caring for my body. Before I get on the court every day I’m tied to like an ultrasound machine or another machine or a recovery unit.
Will there be a farewell tour?
I don’t feel I need to go on the court for the entire world and every fan to know that this is my last time on the court. Even when I was younger, it was not the way I wanted it to end.
How are you coping up with your physical deterioration?
I think we all seem at times in our journey like larger than life because of what we do, but everyone at the core is incredibly fragile. And if anything it just opens up your eyes to what really matters in life, so that was a moment where I had a really good think about my future as well.
Did forgoing meldonium have any impact on your results?
Zero, My shoulder has been an issue since I was 21.
How is your shoulder injury?
It basically comes on with a lot of repetition, and I have a bump on my forearm, and I can’t lift my hands, and it starts with one hand then it goes to the other,” she said. “It’s like shin splints in my forearms.
What are the views of your former practice partner Jannik Sinner on your retirement?
He wrote to me, and he said, ‘I think you should keep playing tennis,’
Wouldn't you give a second thought on your retirement?
Look, would I have loved to have a sixth, a seventh, an eighth Grand Slam trophy? That number sounds better, but I could have had zero when I started, and I got myself to a pretty incredible place.
Is playing tennis depressing or healthy for you?
I don't really have a choice. Whether I am happy or slightly depressed I have to keep playing because that's my job and that is what I really love to do but I do find that when I am having a tough moment that tennis helps me a lot.
What is your outlook on your sports outfit?
You just have to be comfortable with what you are wearing out on the court. And it's windy, your skirt comes up as well a lot of the time. You just have to be really comfortable but it does affect your style a bit because I love wearing sporty looks and I like incorporating that in my everyday life.
Would you like to take part in Dancing with the Stars?
I do not think anyone wants that in their life including me, so no. I would not do Dancing with the Stars. I don't think I have ever really watched Dancing with The Stars, I know what it is but it is not for me.
What about a Hollywood debut?
I don't think anyone is ready for that. I don't think you are ready for that. I think we'll just leave it at what I am up to, and what I am good at, you know? You have to admit things you are not good at.
Did you go to Harvard?
I made it sound like I went to Harvard for four years. I went to Harvard for three weeks so let's not get crazy about that fact. But I did do a summer program, I studied a lot of great things at Harvard Business School and I apply that to all the businesses that I am a part of.
What are your pre-match routines?
I have chicken and vegetable and maybe some rice and then I listen to a little bit of music like Florence and the Machine or Cold Play or U2, Bon Iver. Then I talk to my team, maybe have a little catnap, 10-15 minutes and then I go out and play. It's pretty boring.
Is there any song that motivates you?
I remember listening to U2's Where the Streets Have No Name, as I was driving through the middle of nowhere in Spain and I keep going back to that song because it really reminds you of how still the world can really be when it's just you inside of a car. So I love that song and I bring that up occasionally before my matches.
Tell us about your off-season training routine?
My training routine is quite tough. It starts very early in the morning, at 8:00 AM, where I go through a checkup on the body, so my physio checks everything from my head, make sure my brain is working to my toes to make sure that it's firing. Then I go to the gym, I do another little bit of warm-up, I run a little. Then I go on the court for about a two-hour session. I do a cool-down. I take naps. I love naps. The best part of the day. And then I go back to the gym, and I do another hour and a half or two in the gym or on the track and then I have physical therapy.
What is your everyday makeup routine?
I have to say I don't have enough time to have a proper makeup routine. I start with a clean face. I wear SPF every day no matter if I am training, no matter if I am indoors all day. I love using Supergoop as part of my routine. And then I come home and I make sure I wash that off. That's about it. I use a few niche Japanese brands like Kanebo for mascara and foundation. But other than that I like natural, clean, simple beauty.
Can you recall the time when her family went through the Chernobyl disaster?
The book is written with deep heartbreak, these stories keep my feet on the ground and remind me how fortunate my family was to have fled the disaster. My mother was pregnant with me when Chernobyl exploded 30 kilometers from where we lived. Many of my contributions have been toward families and regions affected by the disaster.
How do you go through difficulties?
The way I handle a situation that comes at me, for example losing a match that was really tough and I was up and ahead and I ended up losing at the end, the way I come off the court, the way I think about it mentally and process it. I take it not as failure but something that didn’t work out and what can I become better at. If I can think about it like that in my sporting world, I’ll be able to take those few little things and bring it into my life, my personal life and my business. So much of life is about perspective. I like to read a lot to calm down. When I’m on the court, everything is about that moment. Sometimes the crowd is drinking their Pimms and eating strawberries. But you know how important that point is, but they don’t actually recognise it. You’re like, ‘get with the programme everyone!’. I love being focused. I have a determination for what I do, and I’m certainly not shy to show it. I perform, I’m an entertainer and I like to give everything I’ve got. Everyone is always a work in progress and there’s some things I’m good at and some things I’m fragile.
How did your perspective in tennis changed over time?
I appreciate things on Tour more every day. I think about what the body needs to do to reach a high level.
Would you not be back to the WTA Tour if you become a mother?
If I opened this chapter, I would spend all the time on it. I have a good friendship with my mother, who was very young when I was born. I want to have that kind of relationship with my son too.
What are your views on people criticizing lack of consistency when speaking of the women's tour?
People always have something to complain about. Our job is to have more good days than bad days in court. We have to keep delivering good tennis.
Why does The Austrian tennis doesn't feature female champions?
Things do not happen over one day. It takes a lot of time to develop talents, knowledge and build a facility. There are many things that need to come together to be successful. The hope is to have a lot of children and that they get inspired. One day they may wake up and think differently. It can give them a different perspective on their goals.
What do you have to say on Kim Clijsters's attempt to come back?
When she played, she was one of the most ambitious and fittest players on court, working all those hours on court after having three children is incredibly admirable.
Do you want to compete at the highest level again?
I love the sport, I am a fighter and I will never turn my shoulder to tennis, which give me so much and I still feel I can achieve something.
What are your comments on expectations of a young girl?
When you are younger, you want everything to be good and you only think about the wins, but when you will be healthy, you may play 19, 20 or more tournaments, and win them all? You have to stay realistic. There will be doubtful moments where you lose self-confidence, it's just normal.
Will you compete in Luxembourg?
I will play some sets and I will see how the shoulder goes, I am not really in a rush, because my real goal is to have a good and healthy preparation to have a good schedule next year. I never played many tournaments in my career over a year, even when I was healthy. I think I appreciate it more and my knowledge is bigger, I am much more aware of what I have to achieve and pf what I want and of what my body needs to go through.
Are you struggling for the appearance in Luxembourg, which would be your last season tournament?
I'm back on track now. I'm doing all the right things, but I might need a little more time. I might play next week. I'll test the shoulder with a couple of practice sets. I'm not in a rush. The main goal is to get healthy, put in the work and play a good schedule in 2020. I want to work my way into 2020 and be healthy
What about your present physical condition?
The shoulder has been weak link in body for many years. This year it got pretty bad. I didn't play for most of the season. But those are the ups and downs an athlete goes through. I have the motivation to get better. I know there are no limits to what you can achieve. For a few months this year the shoulder felt quite good, during the lead-up on grass. But I played a hard match on cement in Canada and that hurt me for the next few weeks.
Hoe do you handle your sport and endorsement assignments together?
I’ve been pretty good in the past, balancing my time with my sponsors with my tennis, because I know my priority. At the end of the day, what I love doing is competing, and that’s where my heart is at: on center court
Tell us something about 'Maria Sharapova brand’?
There’s the Maria that’s a tennis player. There’s the Maria that is a normal girl. And there’s the Maria who’s a businesswoman. And that’s where the ‘Maria Sharapova brand’ comes into play.
Your fitness has become a concern, how do you manage that?
had a procedure to numb my shoulder to get through the match, I share this not to garner pity, but to paint my new reality: My body had become a distraction
How do you prepare for championship matches?
I put in all the right work. There is no guarantee that even when you do all of those things, that you’re guaranteed victory in a first round or in the third round or in the final. That’s the name of this game,
How tennis changed you as a person?
Tennis showed me the world — and it showed me what I was made of. It’s how I tested myself and how I measured my growth. And so in whatever I might choose for my next chapter, my next mountain, I’ll still be pushing. I’ll still be climbing. I’ll still be growing.