Nadal was sent packing by Ukraine's Alexandr Dolgopolov 6-3 3-6
7-6 (7-5) after Sharapova fell to Italian qualifier Camila Giorgi
6-3 4-6 7-5 as last year's men's and women's singles champions both
Nadal blew a 4-2 lead in the deciding tiebreak after the Spaniard
had fought his way back from 5-2 down in the deciding third set.
"I wanted to play very well here. I had good success in this
tournament in the past, a tournament I always feel good about," said
Nadal, who will now turn his attention to the Sony Open in south
"I'm going to keep working hard to try to be ready to play better in
Nadal beat Dolgopolov in the final of the inaugural Rio Open last
month but the Ukrainian got his revenge on the world number one in
the Californian desert.
"I feel great, as after every win, of course. I beat the defending
champion and the number one in the world," said Dolgopolov, whose
next opponent is Fabio Fognini after the Italian saved two match
points in a 6-2 3-6 7-5 win over Frenchman Gael Monfils.
Giorgi, a 22-year-old ranked 79th in the world, made the fourth
round of the U.S. Open last year as a qualifier, but her win over
the world number five Russian was the biggest of her career.
"I did not play a good match at all," said Sharapova, who dropped
serve eight times and committed 58 unforced errors.
"(I've) never played against her, but she's someone that doesn't
give you much rhythm. She's quite aggressive, but some shots she
hits incredible for a long period of time.
"Sometimes they go off a bit. But, if I'm speaking about my level,
it was nowhere near where it should have been."
Giorgi will play her countrywoman Flavia Pennetta in the next round
after she beat Australian Sam Stosur 6-4 3-6 6-1.
There were no other major surprises although Britain's Andy Murray
was forced to dig deep to see off promising Czech Jiri Vesely and
avoid a similar fate.
The Wimbledon champion won 6-7 (7-2) 6-4 6-4 but only after clawing
back from the brink of defeat against the 20-year-old Vesely.
Murray lost the opening set despite going up an early break but then
struggled on serve against the left-handed Vesely, ranked 77th in
The Scotsman was broken six times in the match and trailed in both
the second and third sets but fought back each time, reeling off
four consecutive games to seal victory.
"It was just one of those matches where there wasn't one period
where I thought that the level of tennis from both of us was high at
the same time," said Murray.
"That can create a lot of breaks and a lot of sort of back and forth
swings in the match. It wasn't just the start of the match that was
frustrating. The whole match was."
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Murray will play Canada's big-serving Milos Raonic in the next round
as he bids to win one of the few North American hardcourt titles to
have eluded him.
Switzerland's former world number one Roger Federer also advanced
after he was pushed all the way by Russia's Dmitry Tursunov before
winning 7-6 (9-7) 7-6 (7-2).
Federer, who won his 78th career singles title in Dubai earlier this
month, will play either German Tommy Haas or Japan's Kei Nishikori
in the fourth round.
"I feel like I'm in a good place," said Federer, a four-time
champion at Indian Wells. "I know what my solid level is. Even if I
won 6 and 6 today, I just feel like I was calm and served for the
"Okay, got broken. Still managed to stay calm. Down ... in the
second; stayed calm and came back. So those are the moments where
you feel there is confidence around somewhere."
Australian Open champion Stanislas Wawrinka extended his unbeaten
run this year to 13 matches with a ruthless 6-0 6-2 win over Italy's
Andreas Seppi in just 49 minutes before joining forces with Federer
in the doubles.
China's Li Na, the top seed in the women's draw, had no problems
booking her place in the fourth round, beating Karolina Pliskova of
the Czech Republic 6-3 6-4.
Despite dishing up nine double-faults and having her own service
broken twice, Li was far too strong and streetwise for Pliskova,
wrapping up the win with an ace.
"At least I could win the last point and stay in the tournament," Li
"If you're a tennis player, you'll make double faults. At least I
can improve my serve even more from here."
Li is looking to win her first Indian Wells title and continue her
great start to the year after capturing the Australian Open women's
Her next opponent is Canada's Aleksandra Wozniak, who defeated
Russia's Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-1 6-7 (3-7) 6-0.
(Reporting by Julian Linden in New York;
editing by Greg Stutchbury and Patrick Johnston)
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