Some of the top women’s tennis players in the world, including Maria Sharapova and Simona Halep, came together to inspire and empower the next generation of athletes at Nike’s “Queens of the future” event.
“Always look toward your goal. And recognize that there’s going to be tough times,” Sharapova advised. “Now one’s path, no matter how successful they’ve been in their life, has been easy. And there’s certain sacrifices that you’ll have to make and they won’t be easy as well. But trust me, in the end, it’ll be worth it.”
At the event, younger athletes played “Queen of the Court” with pros like Carolina Garcia and Elina Svitolina. Sharapova and Madison Keys then played a doubles game against 2019 Wimbledon champ Simona Halep and Sloane Stephens, with each pair representing one of the two youth organizations.
Sharapova said events like “Queens of the Future” can inspire both up-and-coming athletes and pro players like herself.
“I love learning from these kids,” she said. “I think there’s a playfulness and youthfulness to all these kids that come out and are shy in the beginning. And you always—you realize that that was you many years ago.”
Both Sharapova and Halep will compete at the 2019 U.S. Open, which starts in New York City in August 2019.