Maria Sharapova loses to Caroline Garcia at Stuttgart Open

Maria Sharapova loses to Caroline Garcia
Garcia, who reached her career-high ranking of seventh earlier this year, earned a second win against Sharapova in six meetings

Maria Sharapova will drop out of the world's top 50 after losing four matches in a row for only the second time in her career.

The five-time Grand Slam champion, 31, was beaten 3-6 7-6 (7-6) 6-4 by French world number seven Caroline Garcia at the Stuttgart Open in Germany.

The Russian spoke this week about her desire to win more major titles after returning from a 15-month doping ban.

But she has not won a match since the Australian Open second round.

Sharapova beat Germany's Tatjana Maria and Latvian 14th seed Anastasija Sevastova at the year's opening Grand Slam in January, before losing to two-time Slam champion Angelique Kerber in the third round.

She then lost to Romanian qualifier Monica Niculescu in Qatar and Japan's Naomi Osaka in Indian Wells.

Sharapova has not climbed back into the top 40 since returning from her ban in April 2017.

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