Top seed still soaring after meteoric rise

Caroline Wozniacki gives interviews to the media at the Family Circle Cup on Monday.

Last year, Caroline Wozniacki showed up at the Family Circle Cup All-Access Hour wearing a blue warm-up suit.

On Monday, she showed up wearing a black cocktail dress and Ray-Ban sunglasses. Sure, she talked to reporters about tennis. But she also talked about Louis Vuitton handbags, shopping at Saks Fifth Avenue on King Street, living in Monte Carlo and French bank accounts.

Yes, success has changed the 19-year-old Dane, whose meteoric rise started when she reached the final of last year's Family Circle Cup. She won three tournaments and became a megastar when she reached the final of the U.S. Open, losing to Kim Clijsters.

While in New York, Wozniacki was invited to close the Nasdaq stock market, following in the footsteps of Sony Ericsson WTA glamour queen Maria Sharapova.

Oh, yeah, she's closing in on $4 million in career earnings and is currently ranked No. 2 in the world.

But there's one thing that didn't change. She still has that contagious smile.

Wozniacki is coming off a championship at Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., over the weekend. She's the No. 1 seed in Charleston this week and is ready for all challengers.

"I just won, and I'm resting today," said Wozniacki, who lost to Elena Dementieva in the Family Circle Cup championship match a year ago. "I don't have any practice today, and I just wanted to look nice for All-Access Hour. You can make anything look good with high heels, sunglasses and a hat."

She has immense talent, honing her skills under her coach Piotr Wozniacki, who just happens to be her father. She talks about her talent, but she also talks about her spirit.

"I think I am a fighter," she said. "That's my biggest weapon. I never give up, and I fight for every point. I can improve, though. I am working on a bit of everything. I'm working on my serve, my return and my volley. I think you can always get better. Tennis is a sport where you are never perfect. You can always get better. That's why it's good to go to the practice court."

She's confident and has a right to be after winning her seventh WTA title in less than three years.

"Well, actually I don't feel any pressure because I am the No. 1 seed," Wozniacki said. "I just play and try to do my best. It doesn't matter when you're on the court if you're the No. 1 seed or unseeded. You just try to win. You just try to see the little yellow ball and try to get as many points and the advantages as possible."

That's what she did at the U.S. Open last September as the No. 9 seed. She didn't win the title, but she became the first Dane to reach a major singles final in the open era.

"A lot of people recognize me on the street," she said of her starpower after the U.S. Open. "A lot of people cheer me on. No. 2 in the world is a nice achievement. I hope to keep improving and to enjoy what I do. Of course I can improve. I can improve a bit in every phase."

The victory in Florida over the weekend gave her a 17-5 record this year and $558,000 in prize money.

That's a pretty good financial statement for a young woman who makes a fashion statement.