21st May, 2012
Maria Sharapova says her victory at the Rome Masters yesterday is a motivation for her going into the French Open.
Sharapova defied a two-hour rain delay to stage an extraordinary comeback to claim the Rome Masters title with a 4-6 6-4 7-6 (7/5) win over China’s reigning French Open champion Li Na.
She said the result would give her enormous confidence heading into Roland Garros, where she has reached the semi-finals twice – in 2007 and last year, where coincidentally she was beaten by Li.
Sharapova told wtatour.com: “This is a great win for me going into Roland Garros. I know the level she played there last year and the level she can play on clay – she’s just a great player really.
“So this win gives me a lot of confidence. It will be nice to have a week off now, after playing three tournaments in the last four weeks. I will have time to recover both mentally and physically.”
The world number two claimed the 26th trophy of her career, but it was a struggle for the Russian who found herself 6-4, 4-0 down before the players were forced off by rain for over two hours just as the final set tiebreak was about to commence.
“It was a crazy match,” said Sharapova. “Either one of us could have own it. There really is no loser.”