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“Serena Williams has marked the heights and the limits of my career — our stories are intertwined,” Sharapova writes.
“It was Serena whom I beat in the Wimbledon final to emerge on the international stage at seventeen, and it’s Serena who’s given me the hardest time since.” But with respect to Williams’s legacy, Sharapova is more of a footnote.
Sharapova, then 17, was touted as the next big thing — a blonde, Siberian-born, Nick Bollettieri-trained ball striker with a peacock-like grunt who could hit as hard as anyone on the women’s tour.Sharapova was seeded 13th, and it seemed like she was still a couple of years away from a breakthrough win.But she made her way through the draw, notching a comeback win in the semifinals after being a set down against American Lindsay Davenport, who was seeded fifth. It's my first victory against her and I just want to enjoy the moment." Halep recorded 12 winners against six unforced errors and broke Sharapova's serve on two occasions to win the match in one hour, 12 minutes."I think she played an incredible match, probably the best she's played against me in all of our previous meetings," said Sharapova, who won the China Open in 2014. She was hitting the ball consistently, not making a lot of unforced errors, her service percentage was quite high. Credit to her, she kept me back there with her consistency." Halep advanced to set up a rematch against Russian Darya Kasatkina, who defeated her last week at the Wuhan Open. 11 seed and defending champion Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland, 4-6, 7-5, 6-2.