Indian Wells, CA, USA, 11 March 2014 |

Sam Stosur’s struggles against Flavia Pennetta have continued, with the Australian going down to the Italian in three sets in their third round match at the BNP Paribas Open.

Stosur battled to win the second set before fading in the third, falling 6-4 3-6 6-1 in just under two hours.

The loss takes Stosur’s head-to-head record against Pennetta to 0-5.

After dropping the opening set, things took an encouraging turn when the 16th seed wrested control of the momentum, smacking a forehand winner into the open court to secure the second set and level proceedings.

But the dynamic of their previous encounters returned; peppering Stosur’s backhand, Pennetta raced to a 3-0 lead, and all but cemented victory when she broke the Australian to love in the sixth game to push ahead 5-1.

She ended up winning eight of the last nine points to secure her place in the fourth round, where she will meet the winner of the match between No.4 seed Maria Sharapova and compatriot Camila Giorgi.

Stosur, meanwhile, remains alive in the women’s doubles event, having progressed to the quarterfinals with Russian partner Svetlana Kuznetsova.