Federer and Sharapova fall in second round of Wimbledon
Federer, who won his Open era-record seventh title last summer, fell in four sets to 116th-ranked Lithuanian qualifier Sergiy Stakhovsky, 7-6, 6-7, 5-7, 6-7, ending his record run of reaching 36 straight Grand Slam quarterfinals.
"I'm in disbelief that it happened," a stunned Stakhovsky said in a post-match interview. "I was playing my best tennis I ever played and it almost wasn't enough to beat Roger. I'm incredibly happy."
Prior to Wednesday, the last time Federer failed to reach the final eight at a Grand Slam was the 2003 French Open, when he lost to Luis Horna in the first round; six weeks later, he won his of 16 first Grand Slam titles at Wimbledon and had gone deep into the second week at every Grand Slam since.
Sharapova, meanwhile, was the victim of an even bigger upset numerically, losing 6-3, 6-4 to Michelle Larcher de Brito, who entered Wimbledon ranked No. 131 by the WTA.
In defeating Sharapova, the 20-year-old de Brito became the first Portuguese woman ever to reach the third round at Wimbledon.
Sharapova slipped and fell several times early in the match on what she called "dangerous" courts, and said after the match she believed her left hip was "strained a little bit," but wouldn't blame that for her departure.
"I just wasn't there," Sharapova said after the match. "All the credit to her, she played really well from start to finish."
Sharapova called the trainer for medical attention after serving in the second set and eventually left the court for several minutes to be stretched out, but still managed to save four match points in the final game before succumbing.
By the end of the day, Federer and Sharapova were just two of a dozen seeded players knocked out at the All-England Club; on the men's side, sixth-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 10th-seeded Marin Cilic, and 18th-seeded American John Isner all either withdrew from or retired due to injury in their second-round matches, while women's No. 2 seed Victoria Azarenka withdrew prior to her second-round tilt and No. 9 Caroline Wozniacki and No. 12 Ana Ivanovic were among those to lose on the court.
Belgian Steve Darcis, who defeated Rafael Nadal in the first round, also withdrew with a shoulder injury as well.
Of the 64 total seeded players, 26 have already been eliminated in the first three days of the fortnight.