It’s over: with zero aces, 12 doubles faults and 60 unforced errors Maria Sharapova, the strongest favorite for the title besides Serena Williams, lost to Flavia Pennetta 6-3 3-6 6-4 in the third round of the 2011 US Open.
The Russian said she hadn’t felt comfortable with most of her game and she lost a three-setter the first time this year (she had a 12-0 record in 2011 when the deciding set had to be played). After being down 3-0 and 4-1 in the final set, Sharapova managed to get the score to 4-all, 15-30 on Pennetta’s serve. Then the downward spiral started for the Russian and the 26th-seeded Pennetta won all the remaining seven points to earn one of the biggest victories of her career in two and a half hours.
Of course, the 2006 US Open champion Sharapova didn’t accept the defeat lightly:
It’s disappointing to lose in New York. Losing isn’t fun for anyone because we work to win. We don’t work to try to lose. So when we’re faced with a position where we can win and we didn’t in the end, it’s tough.