Maria Sharapova was sent tumbling out of the US Open as Anastasija Sevastova produced a display of clinical efficiency to come from behind for a 5-7 6-4 6-2 fourth-round victory.
Sharapova’s first appearance at a grand slam since returning from a doping ban lasted just four matches, Sevastova proving the more composed under pressure to reach the quarter-finals at Flushing Meadows for the second year in succession on Sunday.
The five-time major champion’s campaign began with an impressive victory over second seed and contender for the title Simona Halep, but copious errors proved costly against Sevastova – seeded 16th.
Sharapova took a comfort break after the Latvian forced a decider and surrendered her serve twice in succession to lose the chance to win her second US Open title.
Anastasija Sevastova is back in the#USOpenquarterfinals, ends Sharapova’s remarkable run, 57 64 62. Plays Stephens.
— WTA Insider (@WTA_insider)September 3, 2017
The Russian gave an early indicator of her desire when she won a gutsy point after rushing back and changing hands to return a cross-court volley with a lob in game three.
She took the first break with a backhand down the line but relinquished her advantage with a long forehand, however a sensational return clinched the opening set against Sevastova’s serve.
The Latvian moved clear after fending off a break point in game two and she was able to retain that for the remainder of the set, silly mistakes from Sharapova enabling her to force a third.
Sharapova changed her outfit but she was unable to halt Sevastova’s momentum, the sweetest of drop-shots positioning her for a 3-0 lead which a skewed hit from Sharapova gave her.
The former world number one reduced the deficit despite struggling with a blister on her finger and the 16th seed punished her, wrapping up the match at the fourth time of asking and setting up a last-eight clash with Sloane Stephens.
It will be the first time Stephens, who returned from an 11-month lay-off due to a foot injury at Wimbledon, has appeared in the last eight at a major since 2013, having beaten 30th seed Julia Goerges 6-3 3-6 6-1.
Sevastova  bt Sharapova 5-7 6-4 6-2
Sevastova – 21/14
Sharapova – 42/51
Sevastova – 0/2
Sharapova – 4/5
BREAK POINTS WON
Sevastova – 5/6
Sharapova – 3/6
FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Sevastova – 61
Sharapova – 54
PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Sevastova – 78/44
Sharapova – 67/49
Sevastova – 94
Sharapova – 83