Sharapova won't be showing her sweet side in Brisbane
AMONG the many things you may not know about Maria Sharapova is that she is a purveyor of fine candy.
'Sugarpova' is another arm of the business empire that has helped the 26-year-old become the world's highest-paid female athlete ($US29 million in 2013).
It's shifted under cutesy names like 'silly' and 'flirty' and billed as a reflection of the 'fun and sweet' side of a veteran pro whose steely determination on the court is anything but rainbows and gummy bears.
If it's an attempt to soften the image of the four-time Grand Slam champion, it's been a handy and likely lucrative ploy, given Sharapova has been everywhere from Ellen to The New York Times spreading the word just in time for Christmas.
But as she enters her 13th year on the professional tour, the Russian-born prodigy retains a distinctly hardened edge that continues to drive her quest for titles, beginning at the Brisbane International this week.