London:A profligate Sania Mirza squandered four match points to crash out of the women's singles event of the Wimbledon Championships as she lost her second round match 0-6, 6-4, 7-9 to qualifier Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez on Thursday.
The 21-year-old Indian did manage to overcame a sloppy start after losing the first set on love but awful misses on easy points proved fatal for her.
Sanchez showed acumen and tremendous grit and was rewarded for her consistency and hard work.
Sania, seeded 32nd, wasted three match points in the 13th game of the third set, which allowed her opponent to stage a comeback and the Spaniard did it in style backing her game by powerful service and intelligent tennis at net.
Sania took long to get her rhythm and within the first 21 minutes, the Indians had lost the first set without managing a single game.
The Indian then got her act together as she negotiated the attacking net game of Sanchez through some wonderful lob shots.
The second set, which again started on a dismal note as she dropped her serve, was remarkable for Sania as he displayed ample determination to stay in the hunt through improved tactics.
Sania broke Sanchez in the sixth and 10th games to draw parity in the match and the credit goes to very effective lob shots she displayed to negotiate a thinking opponent.
Sania created open space in the court in the 10th game, hit hard her shots to claim the set and shed her over-reliance on the big shots to stretch the match to the decider. 4-2 by breaking Sanchez in the second and sixth games but she nullified all the good work by handing two breakpoints in the seventh game after missing easy shots.
Next two games went on serve and Sania earned her first match point in the 10th game when a Sanchez forehand sailed long. The Spaniard saved it through a brilliant forehand winner and followed it by another to ward off the threat.
Sanchez then saved three more match points in the 13th game as pressure saw the Indian lose her calm. Sania could not convert any of the chance as she preferred to hit hard rather than apply intelligence.
Low on confidence, Sania then handed two breakpoints in the 15th game to her opponent, who grabbed it with both hands and held her own serve in the next to knock down the Indian's challenge in the singles event in little more than two hours.