Serena Slams Sharapova Over Book 'Hearsay' Ahead Of French Open Face-Off
Sharapova's biography suggested Williams hated her which was 'a little bit disappointing'.
Serena Williams has described comments in Maria Sharapova's autobiography as "100 percent hearsay" and "a little disappointing" ahead of their highly anticipated match in the fourth round of the French Open on Monday.
Williams said females should "bring each other up" before claiming Sharapova had been playing well again, after "her incident of drugs or not".
Sharapova's recent memoir Unstoppable suggested the reason Williams had beaten her in 19 of their 21 matches stemmed from the Russian's win in the 2004 Wimbledon final. Her autobiography claimed Williams "hated" her for crying after the match.
“The book was 100 percent hearsay – at least all the stuff I read and the quotes that I read, which was a little bit disappointing," Williams told a press conference.
"I have cried in the locker room many times after a loss. I think it’s normal. If anything, it shows the passion and the desire and the will that you have to want to go out there and do the best. It’s a Wimbledon final, you know?
“It would be more shocking if I wasn’t in tears. I do have emotions and I wear them on my sleeve. I’m human. What happens there should definitely maybe stay there and not necessarily talk about it in a not‑so‑positive way in a book.”
Williams and Sharapova will face off at Roland Garros on Monday in their first match since the 2016 Australian Open.
“Quite frankly, she’s probably a favourite," Williams said of the match, which is being touted as a promoter's dream.
“Before her incident of drugs or not, I just feel she was doing good. Now she’s doing well again . . .
“I don’t have any negative feelings towards her. It was a little disappointing to see in that hearsay book. Especially having a daughter, I feel negativity is taught. Women, especially, should bring each other up.
“A lot of people always assume that I feel a different way and it’s not true. You know, if anything, I feel like we should encourage each other and the success of one female should be the inspiration to another. I have said that a thousand times. I always get inspired by other women that are doing well."