Sharapova loses in three-set at Wimbledon

June 24th, 2009 - 10:31 pm ICT by IANS  

Maria Sharapova London, June 24 (DPA) Maria Sharapova’s charmed life over three sets was ended as Argentine underdog Gisela Dulko held off a fightback to eliminate the 2004 champion 6-2, 3-6, 6-4 for a place in the third round at the Wimbledon Championships Wednesday.
The Argentine, ranked world No.45, needed five match points in the final game before a Sharapova forehand went long to end the contest after two hour, 13 minutes.

Sharapova had come back for victories over three sets four times at the French Open, but Dulko made sure the past was not repeated on grass.

The win was her first from three attempts against Sharapova, who only resumed playing a month ago after eight months out with a shoulder injury and surgery.

Sharapova, her ranking down to 60th as she slowly regains top form, began to lift, her screech increasing with the fervour of her fight, while trailing a set and 0-3. She won the second set and gave Dulko a huge scare in the third before the Argentine squeezed home a winner.

Russian tenth seed Nadia Petrova advanced over Shahar Peer 6-3, 6-2 while number 14 Slovak Dominika Cibulkova booked her place against Urszula Radwanska 6-2, 6-4.

Daniela Hantuchova upset China’s 16th seed Zheng Jie 6-3, 7-5.

In men’s play on the second straight day of sunshine and warm summer temperatures, fourth seed Novak Djokovic dispatched German qualifier Simon Greul 7-5, 6-1, 6-4.

Ninth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga didn’t have to strike as ball as Italian Simone Bolelli withdrew injured before their match to give the Frenchman a walkover.

Elsewhere in the second round as five-time champion Roger Federer took the court, Mardy Fish beat Serb Janko Tipsarevic 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 and Israeli Dudi Sela knocked out 2008 semi-finalist Rainer Schuettler 7-6 (7-3), 6-3, 6-2.

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