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Azarenka’s Australian run ends in quarterfinal loss

  • iVictoria Azarenka of Belarus bites a towel  a forehand during a break in her quarterfinal against Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Andrew Brownbill)

    iVictoria Azarenka of Belarus bites a towel a forehand during a break in her quarterfinal against Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Andrew Brownbill)

  • Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland makes a forehand return during her quarterfinal against Victoria Azarenka of Belarus  at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)

    Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland makes a forehand return during her quarterfinal against Victoria Azarenka of Belarus at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)

  • Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia makes a forehand return to Simona Halep of Romania during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

    Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia makes a forehand return to Simona Halep of Romania during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

  • Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia makes a forehand return to Simona Halep of Romania during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Andrew Brownbill)

    Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia makes a forehand return to Simona Halep of Romania during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Andrew Brownbill)

  • Victoria Azarenka of Belarus checks strings of her racket during a break in her quarterfinal against Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

    Victoria Azarenka of Belarus checks strings of her racket during a break in her quarterfinal against Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

  • Simona Halep of Romania  makes a backhand return to Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

    Simona Halep of Romania makes a backhand return to Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

  • iVictoria Azarenka of Belarus bites a towel  a forehand during a break in her quarterfinal against Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Andrew Brownbill)
  • Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland makes a forehand return during her quarterfinal against Victoria Azarenka of Belarus  at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)
  • Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia makes a forehand return to Simona Halep of Romania during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)
  • Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia makes a forehand return to Simona Halep of Romania during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Andrew Brownbill)
  • Victoria Azarenka of Belarus checks strings of her racket during a break in her quarterfinal against Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aaron Favila)
  • Simona Halep of Romania  makes a backhand return to Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia during their quarterfinal at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014.(AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

MELBOURNE, Australia – Victoria Azarenka’s 18-match winning streak at the Australian Open ended in an upset 6-1, 5-7, 6-0 quarterfinal loss to Agnieszka Radwanska today to continue the flow of stars tumbling out of the season’s first major.

Fifth-seeded Radwanska ended a streak of three consecutive quarterfinal defeats at the Australian Open with a stunning display of versatile shot-making that confused the big-hitting defending champion.

She next plays No. 20 Dominika Cibulkova, who won the last eight games in a one-hour, 6-3, 6-0 quarterfinal rout of No. 11-seeded Simona Halep. Azarenka’s loss followed the fourth-round exits of top-ranked Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova and leaves 2011 French Open champion Li Na as the only major winner remaining in the women’s draw.

Li will play 19-year-old Canadian Eugenie Bouchard in the other semifinal.

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MELBOURNE, Australia – Novak Djokovic continued an upsetting trend at the Australian Open. The three-time defending champion joined Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova as unexpected early departures from the season’s first major with a quarterfinal loss last night to Stanislas Wawrinka. Djokovic came into the match with 28 consecutive wins since losing last year’s U.S Open final to Rafael Nadal, … 0

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