Sharapova Unnerved in Loss to Radwanska Gamesmanship at US Open

Posted on September 2, 2007

Poland's 18-year-old Agnieszka Radwanska stunned defending US Open champion Maria Sharapova 6-4, 1-6, 6-2 Saturday on a breezy day at Flushing Meadows where the Russian collapsed in the third set, committing 20 unforced errors.

Radwanka felt Sharapova played nervously in the windy conditions.

"Because it was so windy, and against the wind it was very tough to serve," Radwanska said. "And also I have problem with my serve, but yeah, I think she make many mistakes and double-faults so I think she was a little bit nervous."

Radwanska added that her gamesmanship, moving in on Sharapova's serve before sprinting backwards, was intentional as the Russian threw in a number of doubles faults.

"Yeah. I knew that she doesn't like if somebody is moving if she serving," Radwanska said. "She was also nervous with this, so I was trying to do something like this."

Sharapova in the end credited her opponent, who was a two-time Grand Slam junior winner.

"You got to give her a lot of credit for finishing the match and winning it...There's no excuses," Sharapova said. "It's not like today I stepped out on the wrong side of the bed or I did something differently. Like I said, I'm going to have these types of days where although I might be up a break in the third set, but it just doesn't go my way."

Other upsets were performed by Hungary's Agnes Szavay who topped No. 7 seed Nadia Petrova 6-4, 6-4, Austria's Tamira Paszek who outlasted No. 11 Patty Schnyder 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(1), and Belarus' Victoria Azarenka who rolled No. 16 Martina Hingis in the third set 3-6, 6-1, 6-0.

"I knew who I had to face was -- she was No. 1 junior and played very decent in the first couple rounds," Hingis said. "I mean, she can play. You could see today definitely it's like a tournament where the youngsters succeed."

Other seeded winners were (4) Svetlana Kuznetsova (d. (31) Medina Garrigues), (6) Anna Chakvetadze (d. (26) Mirza), and (18) Shahar Peer who had a mild upset over (13) Nicole Vaidisova 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(5).

In the lone all-unseeded match, the Ukraine's Julia Vakulenko defeated Maria Kirilenko 6-2, 6-4.

On tap for Sunday at the US Open is (8) Serena Williams vs. (10) Marion Bartoli, (5) Ana Ivanovic vs. (12) Venus Williams, (1) Justine Henin vs. (15) Dinara Safina, and (3) Jelena Jankovic vs. (19) Sybille Bammer.