Second seed Maria Sharapova
crashed out of of the Kremlin Cup
after her first match at the hands of Belarus teenager Victoria Azarenka
on Wednesday. The 18-year-old Azarenka beat Sharapova in straight sets 7-6 (11/9), 6-2 in one hour 49 minutes in their first ever meeting.
"I tried to stay focused and believed I could win the match," Azarenka said. "I do not think Masha (Sharapova) played her best tennis today but the match was a high-level one and I'm really happy to win it." Sharapova
, who enjoyed a first round bye, started confidently and was leading the score 5-3 and was serving for the first set.
However, she suddenly lost her nerve allowing the unheralded Belarus teenager to survive three set points and pull the scores level, forcing a tiebreak, which she won after surviving three more set points. In the second set, Sharapova, who was wearing a plaster on her injured right shoulder, looked only a pale shadow of her normal self allowing Azarenka, who is 32nd in the world, to break twice to win the set and the match. "Maybe I was too opinionated when I was leading the score 5-3," Sharapova said. "That was the point where it all started. Had I won the first set everything could have been much better for me."
Labels: Kremlin Cup - 2007, Victoria Azarenka