Former world No. 1 Maria Sharapova admitted that Serena Williams was the most intimidating opponent for her. Sharapova and Williams had many great battles but it was the American that had much more success in their meetings.
Williams and Sharapova met for the first time at the 2004 Miami Masters and the American claimed a straight-set win. Sharapova got her revenge in their following match as she beat Williams at Wimbledon the same year. Sharapova and Williams also clashed at the season-ending WTA Finals event in 2004 and the Russian earned her second win over the American.
Hardly anybody could predict at the time that it would be Sharapova’s last win against Williams.
Williams won the last 19 meetings against Sharapova
“Serena Williams was by far the most intimidating opponent for me
When I was young, I lost to Monica Seles 6–0, 6–1, and I really thought I had a good game. I came off the court bawling, I don’t know if I was 16 or 17, and told my dad, who was my coach at the time, that I really thought I played well.
I completely collapsed (laughs). But yeah, Serena was definitely the toughest, toughest, and most consistent competitor at her level,” Sharapova said during her appearance on the Never Stand Still podcast. Sharapova enjoyed a successful career as she won five Grand Slam titles and achieved a career-high ranking of No.
1 in 2005. “I found so many connections and commonalities with people when I talked about tennis,” Sharapova said. “I could have been in the best shape, I could have been playing the best tennis, but if my mind wasn’t there, it didn’t matter.”
Sharapova, 34, officially announced her retirement from the game in February 2020. Sharapova went down as one of the most popular players in tennis history. Sharapova was just 17 when she won her first Grand Slam title at Wimbledon in 2004.