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Home > Sports > Tennis > Reuters > Report

Sharapova powers into third round

Larry Fine | August 31, 2007 09:55 IST

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Maria Sharapova [Images] has lost just two games in her first two matches but the 20-year-old Russian is taking nothing for granted in her drive to defend her U.S. Open title.

"I'm sure with every match it's only going to get tougher," said Sharapova after a second round 6-1 6-0 rout of Australian Casey Dellacqua on Thursday.

"My job out here is to be professional about what I do, respect each opponent, and go into each match thinking that it's going to be the toughest match of my life.

"If it's the easiest match in my life I'll take it from there."

It was the Russian's first meeting against Dellacqua, but it did not take long for her to find her groove. Sharapova belted 30 winners against just two for her foe in a 51-minute match.

"She played extremely well," said 90th-ranked Dellacqua. "I felt like I was on the back foot every point."

"She didn't give me a thing. I didn't get a free point. She is really focused out there." 

Sharapova, runner-up at the Australian Open, a semi-finalist in the French and a fourth-round loser to eventual champion Venus Williams at Wimbledon, said she is hungry to recapture the feeling she had last year in New York.

"I just know how great it felt to win here," she said.

"You just want to have that same feeling again and repeat it.

"In the sport of tennis there's only one champion, and it's a pretty good feeling coming off a tournament and being that champion."

Sharapova has one just one tournament title -- this summer in San Diego -- in a season hampered by a shoulder injury.

"This summer I definitely feel like I'm playing better tennis, and one of biggest factors is I feel healthy.

"I feel like I'm playing freely and I know what I'm capable of doing on the court."

Sharapova, who overwhelmed Italian Roberta Vinci 6-0 6-1 in the first round, next meets 30th seed Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland, who advanced past Virginie Razzano of France [Images].

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