WIMBLEDON, England – Top-seeded Maria Sharapova was knocked out of Wimbledon on Monday, losing 6-4, 6-3 to Sabine Lisicki in the fourth round a month after completing a career Grand Slam.
Lisicki, a 15th-ranked German, simply outplayed the 2004 Wimbledon champion in windy, rainy conditions on Court 1 for her first career victory over Sharapova in four matches. She avenged a loss in the semifinals to Sharapova here last year.
Also advancing were four-time winner Serena Williams and defending champ Petra Kvitova. Four-time Grand Slam champion Kim Clijsters lost in what she says is her final Wimbledon before retirement later this year.
In men's play, six-time champion Roger Federer was the first to reach the quarterfinals, overcoming an early injury scare to beat Xavier Malisse 7-6 (1), 6-1, 4-6, 6-3 and extend his record for most consecutive Grand Slam round of eight appearances to 33.
After smacking an ace down the middle on her third match point, Lisicki collapsed to her knees on the grass and shook both fists. Among those cheering for Lisicki in the guest box was German NBA star Dirk Nowitzki of the Dallas Mavericks.
"It's just unbelievable," Lisicki said. "For the third time I've beaten the French Open champion here. I'm just so happy. I've lost the three previous meetings against her. Now I just played well and beat her for the first time."
Sharapova was trying to become the first woman since Williams in 2002 to win the French Open and Wimbledon in the same year.
"I just went for my shots. Really from the first point on I felt great out there," Lisicki said. "It's my favorite tournament. I love playing on grass; I love the crowd here. I just love it."
Lisicki will next face another German, No. 8 Angelique Kerber, who drubbed Clijsters 6-1, 6-1. The 47th-ranked Belgian has said she is retiring after this year's U.S. Open — this time for good, having returned to the sport in 2009 after a two-year break. Clijsters, who has been dogged by injuries this year, walked off Court 3 with a brief wave.
Third-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska also advanced, beating Italian qualifier Camila Giorgi 6-2, 6-3.
Leading Malisse 4-3 in the opening set, Federer called for a medical timeout and left Centre Court with the trainer for treatment in the locker room for a back problem. When play resumed eight minutes later, Federer didn't seem visibly affected — although the speed on his first serve lacked its usual velocity.
Still, in the final game, Federer hit two service winners and closed out the match with a 122 mph ace. He'll next play Mikhail Youzhny, who beat Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan in five sets.
The sixth-seeded Williams won the last three games to beat 65th-ranked wild card Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan 6-1, 2-6, 7-5 in cool and gusty conditions on Court 2.
Williams hopped in joy with both feet in the air after hitting a big forehand that forced an error by Shvedova on the first match point, ending a hard-hitting contest that lasted nearly two hours.
"I didn't want to lose today and I thought, 'Just stay relaxed,'" Williams said. "I knew the whole match I could play better."
Williams will next face Kvitova, who rallied from a set and a break down to beat former French Open champion Francesca Schiavone 4-6, 7-5, 6-1 in an error-filled match on Court 3.
It was the second straight tough three-set victory for Williams, who won 9-7 in the third to beat Zheng Jie in the previous round.
"I feel fine," she said. "I'm not tired. I'm not anything. I feel good. I feel like, bottom line, I can play so much better than what I have been playing. ... You know me. I'm never satisfied."
The first player to reach the quarters was 37th-ranked Austrian Tamira Paszek, who beat Italy's Roberta Vinci 6-2, 6-2 to reach the final eight for the second year in a row.