No. 26 seed Flavia Pennetta, of Italy, knocked off the 2006 champion 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 in the third round to hand Sharapova her first loss in 13 three-set matches this year.
“She’s a good fighter,” said Pennetta, who conceded she didn’t know about Sharapova’s record in three-setters. “You can never give up with her. You have to be focused until the last game, until the last point, actually.”
Sharapova made 12 double-faults, including two in the last game. She did not look sharp over a 2 hour, 29-minute match that featured plenty of nervous tennis. Sharapova made 60 unforced errors and lost four break points while trailing 2-0 in the third set.
“I didn’t feel comfortable with most of my game today,” Sharapova said.
After her loss, defending champion Rafael Nadal was leading 6-2, 6-2 against Frenchman Nicolas Mahut when Mahut retired with an abdominal injury. In Louis Armstrong Stadium, No. 4 Andy Murray rallied for a 6-7 (5), 2-6, 6-2, 6-0, 6-4 victory over Robin Haase.
Murray’s next match is against No. 25 Feliciano Lopez, who defeated Canada’s Vasek Pospisil, 5-7, 6-4, 7-6 (3), 7-6 (5).
Other men’s winners included 12th-seeded Gilles Simon, 24th-seeded Juan Ignacio Chela and 18th-seeded Juan Martin del Potro, the 2009 champion. No. 17 Jurgen Melzer and No. 30 Ivan Ljubicic lost.
Pennetta will face No. 13 Peng Shuai, who defeated No. 19 Julia Goerges, 6-4, 7-6 (1).
Earlier, No. 2 Vera Zvonareva defeated No. 30 Anabel Medina Garrigues and No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki is still in the draw, but neither has won a Grand Slam title. Sharapova was largely considered the biggest remaining threat to No. 28 Serena Williams, but now the Russian is gone, as well.
Elsewhere at Flushing Meadows, No. 28 John Isner, a former Georgia Bulldog, defeated fellow American Robby Ginepri 6-4, 6-3, 6-4.