Published: Thu, September 06, 2018
Sport | By Ashley Hunter

Maria Sharapova beaten by birthday girl Carla Suarez Navarro in New York

Maria Sharapova beaten by birthday girl Carla Suarez Navarro in New York

Spain's Suarez Navarro sent Maria Sharapova crashing out of the ongoing US Open after a 6-3, 6-4 straight sets victory on Tuesday.

Osaka is through to a grand slam quarter-final for the first time, after battling past fellow in-form 20-year-old Aryna Sabalenka in a fascinating encounter on Louis Armstrong Stadium.

- Carla Suarez Navarro defeated Maria Sharapova on her 30th birthday, erasing the memory of her loss past year to Venus Williams which put a dampener on her 29th birthday.

"But Maria, she's a really good player".

Progression to the quarter-finals at a second Grand Slam means Suarez Navarro makes 2018 her most successful year. "She is from the United States so the crowd will probably help her", Suárez Navarro said.

The fearlessness that Sharapova had shown in her previous night matches had gone missing, and it was as if she made a decision to go home swinging.

Sharapova collected the trophy in NY at age 19 in 2006 and owns a total of five Grand Slam titles, but the Russian was far shakier during this match than Suarez Navarro, who never has made it past the quarterfinals at a major.

"That's a lot tougher than being a 31-year-old and having the opportunity to do what I want in my life".

Also making the last eight was 2017 runner-up Madison Keys who eased to a 6-1, 6-3 win over Slovakia's Dominika Cibulkova. "You just have a dream", she said in her post-match interview, during which she laughed off suggestions that her best days are behind her.

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Maria Sharapova, of Russian Federation, waits for Jelena Ostapenko, of Latvia, to serve during the third round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018, in NY.

Tsurenko also made sure of a maiden quarter-final at the Slams by seeing off Czech teenager Marketa Vondrousova.

The Spanish 30th seeed took advantage of an error-prone Sharapova to secure a 6-4 6-3 victory.

"If I didn't have the belief to keep doing this and to keep having the motivation and the grind of doing this every day in order to get myself in these positions, I don't think I would be here", said Sharapova. It took her three tight sets to get past first Nicole Gibbs and then former world #10 Kristina Mladenovic before she met sixth seed Carolina Garcia in the third round.

This loss meant that her 23-match winning streak has come to an end. Suarez Navarro was clean off the ground and committed just 20 unforced errors throughout the match.

"It's no secret that Serena is my favourite", she said.

The No. 19 seed Latvian said it is always tough to play Stephens - her ball is heavy and she generates a lot of spin on both her forehand and backhand, Sevastova said during the news conference.

Vondrousova accused Tsurenko of putting on an act, but the Ukrainian insisted her struggles were real, saying: "I don't know what to say". But I think I made a really complete match from the beginning until the end.

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