Molik upsets Sharapova in Zurich final

Molik upsets Sharapova in Zurich final
By Eurosport

24/10/2004 at 15:50Updated

Looking for a third consecutive WTA title, following victories in Seoul and Tokyo, Maria Sharapova lost her first career final and a 12-match winning streak. The Wimbledon champion appeared hampered by a shoulder injury in a surprise defeat by unseeded Au

Sharapova, the world number seven had looked in total control during the early stages of the final, out-powering and out-running Molik with a barrage of fine groundstrokes.

Despite early nerves, Molik played her way back into contention as her Russian opponent hit a string of unforced errors having won a 6-4 first set.

After calling for treatment on her right shoulder, Sharapova was much improved in a tight third set.

But Molik, once touted as one of the game's most promising teenagers, maintained her momentum - grabbing a decisive break late on before serving out to love for an impressive 4-6 6-2 6-3 victory.

"My preparations weren't ideal, because I picked up an injury in Filderstadt and had to take five days off. At the start of the week I really didn't think I'd be in this position."

Injury may also have played a part in Sharapova's performance as she failed to maintain the form that brought her back-to-back titles earlier this month.

"It definitely affected the way I played but you just have to live with these things and the credit should go to Alicia for coming back from a set down.

"She just seemed to pick up her level and in the third set her serve was just too good."

Prior to Sunday's defeat, Sharapova had never lost in the final of a WTA event, having won all six of her previous title matches.