BEIJING, Sept. 29 (Xinhua) -- After years of playing in the WTA tour, Russia's world number two Maria Sharapova has managed to cope with the long season with her experience.
"It's a pretty long season of 10 months of playing tournaments, but I have a normal schedule, I don't play too many events. I try to focus on the ones I feel are important and work my schedule around that," Sharapova, who is playing the China Open here after missing last year's edition, said on Saturday.
The long calendar became the most talked topic at the China Open when world number four Serena Williams has pulled out of the mandatory tournament citing injuries.
"There is no doubt towards the end of the season you are not as fit as you are in the beginning, maybe don't have much energy. And also we had the addition of the Olympics this year so it was incredibly busy this year."
"I have been on the tour for many years, so I'm quite experienced in knowing how to recover from tournaments and how my body feels and what I need to do in order to prepare," she added.
The 25-year-old Sharapova has also been hit by injuries many times in past years, which even put her career in question, but the Russian said she won't quit.
"I still have so much passion for what I do. I love going out and competing and learning and trying to get better. This career goes on for so many years. It would be stupid not to take advantage of the fact that you really enjoy doing something and you like waking up in the morning and getting better at it."
"I have done it from a very young age, and right now I don't see my life without it. So there is no real reason to even think of retirement."
Coming up for her in the opening round at the China Open will be Simona Halep of Romania, a player she defeated in the only encounter between them.
"She can play really good. I think she was injured a little bit in the summer. I have to focus on what I have to do, that's pretty much my priority right now," Sharapova said.