File photo of Maria Sharapova. Photograph:( Reuters )
At 30-40 Sharapova engineered her first match point but Wozniacki held her nerve in a gutsy 18-shot rally.
Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova on Friday defeated defending champion Caroline Wozniacki 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 at the ongoing Australian Open.
This is Sharapova's biggest win since her return, as the two met for the 11th time today.
At 30-40 Sharapova engineered her first match point but Wozniacki held her nerve in a gutsy 18-shot rally. More brute force from Sharapova at deuce created a second match point, monstering another poor second serve before pounding away until the dam broke.
"I thought the level was quite high. I knew I'd get a tough match - she [Wozniacki] is the defending champion. I haven't played many matches in the last year against top players so it was really rewarding to win that last set. These are the kinds of matches I train for, Sharapova said in her post-match interview.
"I am definitely not walking round thinking I have the experience and they will give it to me because the girl on the other side will have their own experience," She added.
Sharapova will next face Australia's Ashleigh Barty in the fourth round.