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Page last updated at 21:32 GMT, Sunday, 14 March 2010

Britain's Elena Baltacha crashes out at Indian Wells


Baltacha hopeful of rise in ranking

Britain's Elena Baltacha lost to Australian Alicia Molik in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells in California.

Qualifier Baltacha, who claimed her first win over a top-10 ranked player with victory over Li Na in round two, succumbed 6-0 6-2 to wildcard Molik.

The Australian number five, ranked 138th in the world, took 56 minutes to see off the British number one.

"I'm gutted that I couldn't produce the performance I wanted to," she said.

"Molik is more experienced than I am at being in that position and it showed.

knowledge is good

"The week's been fantastic. Qualifying and beating a top-ten player is a big positive and I have to remember that."

Baltacha, the world number 65, recorded a first-serve percentage of 33% in the first set as Molik converted all three break points on offer.

The Briton fell two breaks down early in the second set before eventually holding serve twice but Molik strolled to the win.

Molik plays China's Zheng Jie, who beat Russia's Maria Sharapova 6-3 2-6 6-3 in a match of dropped service games.

Zheng was broken six times, but she hit back with seven breaks of her own as Sharapova, the 2006 winner, struggled with an injury to her right elbow and had 14 double faults.

The number 10 seed lost the last four games after getting treatment while leading 3-2 in the deciding set and preparing to serve.

Elsewhere, second seed Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark had no problems in a routine 6-0 6-3 victory over Maria Kirilenko of Russia.

In other matches, Poland's fifth seed Agnieszka Radwanska beat Gisela Dulko of Argentina 6-1 6-0, while France's 11th seed Marion Bartoli beat Jill Craybas of the USA 6-2 6-0.

But 15th seed Francesca Schiavone of Italy fell 6-7 (7-4) 7-6 (7-2) 6-4 to France's Aravane Rezai in a match that stretched just short of three hours.

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see also
Baltacha celebrates best-ever win
13 Mar 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha wins Indian Wells opener
11 Mar 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha qualifies for California
10 Mar 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha targets top 50 ranking
05 Mar 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha moves up to 64 in world
02 Mar 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha victorious in Michigan
15 Feb 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha takes British top spot
30 Nov 09 |  Tennis
Baltacha falls to powerful Safina
22 Jan 10 |  Tennis

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