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May 25, 2015

Maria Sharapova


6-2, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: Questions in English, please.

Q. You were also sick last year at the start of the tournament. Do you take this as a good omen?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, I got over it. I got sick a week before the tournament, not right before. So I guess it's a little bit better timing. But it's just the way it is. I'm getting over it, and hopefully it will pass by soon.

Q. How are you feeling? Did you notice how different you sounded out there? Because obviously we're used to hearing you when you play and the noise you were making was totally different today.
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, it was really the least of my worries today. Such a big occasion obviously for me to be out, back on center court, and I just, I had a tough opponent ahead of me. I just -- of course I wanted to win the match, but I knew that it was going to be tough and it wasn't going to depend on the tennis. And, you know, the conditions were pretty difficult as well. So really, overall just happy I got through and have a day off tomorrow and I should be better by then.

Q. What are the exact symptoms you're feeling and necessary steps? I guess it's just a cold? How do you get better?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, it's kind of like that (smiling).

Q. You managed to win that match fighting through sickness. Do you think it's a bit harsh to get booed at the end?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: No. Of course I totally understand that, you know, everyone usually does postinterviews and answers a few questions to the crowd. It's absolutely normal. I don't -- I'm not making any excuses or -- but I've got to do what I have to do.

Q. Genie Bouchard starts her tournament tomorrow. She's been having a so-so second year. You've been through a lot in your career. Is it sophomore jinx? Is the second year tougher than the first one? How do you see her situation right now?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I mean, I think she had a great year last year. I think she's obviously on a great path to success, and she's beaten a lot of top players. She knows how to do it. I'm sure she will be doing it again.

Q. This is the second time you have come here as the defending champion. Does it feel any different this time around as you start this tournament and the first time than the first time you tried to defend?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Every time is different. I think you always look back to all the different memories that you've created over the years, and I have obviously had many great ones and many tough ones, as well. I always love coming back the first few days when the tournament is just getting going and you only see the staff around. I think that's always quite special, a bit eerie and there is no one really there and you're able to relive your special moment in your mind a bit.

Q. Did you ever have any doubts about playing today? Were you ever that sick?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: I mean, unless I'm really in my coffin, I'm going to be out there (laughter). Yeah.

Q. Can you just talk about your next match? She struggled with injuries and now she's back. Do you know her well?
MARIA SHARAPOVA: Actually, I just got to know her during Fed Cup this year. That was really the first time where we spent some time together. I didn't get a chance to practice with her. I practiced with the other girls. I saw her play doubles a little bit. You know, it seemed like a wasted match in a way, but maybe it was good because it was the first time I had seen her strike the ball. She's a big hitter. Goes a lot for her shots. But at this point I really just want to focus on my game and not worry about the opponent too much.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
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