Maria Sharapova Opens Up, Talks About Career in Tennis, Rival Serena Williams, Sugarpova and More

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By Rachelle Corpuz | November 7, 2013 10:16 AM EST

Maria Sharapova sat down for an interview with Lee Hawkins, who hosts WSJ Live's "The Business of Celebrity," when she came to New York City to promote her premium candy line Sugarpova.

The champion tennis star is certainly doing well on the business world as she is on the tennis court. Sugarpova is currently being distributed to countries such as Canada, Japan, Russia, UK, China, India and the U.S., of course. It was also distributed in Melbourne in time for her appearance during the Australian Open. From half a million capital, she hopes to be able to double the money.

The former World No. 1 almost decided to change her last name to Sugarpova during the 2013 U.S. Open but she decided against the idea. "I considered it for quite a while," said Sharapova. "I wanted to do something fun and different. I mean that's what the whole candy line was all about, but I just realized that it is very difficult to change your last name," she added.

"Sugarpova is the candy, although now I type in my last name and it autocorrects to Sugarpova," said Ms Sharapova.

Ms Sharapova stated that even though she is working on Sugarpova, tennis is still her core. "I think I've done a really good job in my career of balancing my career and my professionalism on the court, and doing what I have to do there," she said when asked if she thought she could expand too much and lose focus on tennis. "And then, when you get off it, expanding into other things, keeping your mind creative, working, you know I never had a typical education so I feel like I learn through so many things, whether it's business or advertising, too," she added.

Ms Sharapova has been playing professional tennis for nearly a decade now. How long can she play for the circuit? "Time will tell, the body will tell," she said. "I certainly didn't think when I was 16 or 17 years old that when I am 26, I will still be playing but here I am and I still feel that I have quite a bit to go," said Ms Sharapova.

She also opened up about her rival Serena Williams. "I think Serena has done an incredible job on the court," said Ms Sharapova. "Her tennis has spoken for itself, in the last many years that she has competed," she said. "The amount of Grand Slams that she has been able to win, especially at her age now, still competing at the highest level and maybe her best level yet," she added.

For more of Sharapova's interview, here's the link to the video.

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