Sharapova loses in return from injury

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Maria Sharapova. AP FILE PHOTO

CINCINNATI – American Sloane Stephens spoiled Maria Sharapova’s return from injury on Tuesday, upsetting the third seed 2-6, 7-6 (7/5), 6-3 in Cincinnati.

Russia’s Sharapova, a four-time Grand Slam champion, tumbled out of the second round of this combined WTA and ATP Masters hardcourt tournament, her first since a shock second-round exit at Wimbledon.

Sharapova had since been sidelined by a hip injury that has delayed her preparations for the US Open, the final Grand Slam of the year.

Sharapova’s new coach, US great Jimmy Connors, could only watch in dismay as Stephens rallied to beat his charge, who had enjoyed a first-round bye.

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