Indian Wells, CA, USA, 12 March 2017 | Matt Trollope

Sam Stosur yet again found Julia Goerges too strong in a three-set loss at Indian Wells on Saturday.

The Australian, seeded 16th, fell to the world No.50 4-6 6-4 6-4 on Stadium 6, her fifth defeat in six matches against the German.

Goerges next faces the winner of the match between No.22 seed Anastasija Sevastova and American Lauren Davis.

Stosur was at Goerges’ mercy in the opening set, simply hanging in as the contest was decided on her opponent’s racquet.

Goerges dished up the whole gamut – aces (four), double faults (three), winners and errors – and it was Stosur who went on to take the opening set, breaking serve in the fourth, sixth and 10th games to nudge ahead.

Yet Goerges settled into the contest, finding her range and assisted by Stosur’s mounting error count.

She broke in the third game of the second set and consolidated that thanks to a raft of winners. And despite three set points coming and going in the ninth game, she stepped up to the line at 5-4 and held to love with a flourish courtesy of an ace and backhand winner.

Crushing her inside-out forehand, the German broke for 2-1 in the third and the contest appeared all but over.

Yet Stosur rallied, a combination of her improved play and a sloppy game from Goerges at 3-2.

The German’s errors helped Stosur break back for 3-3 and the Aussie backed that up with a confident hold for 4-3, pumping herself up as she walked to her chair.

She then went up 0-30 and looked poised to win a fourth straight game – until her chances unravelled in errors.

Goerges won eight of the next 10 points against a dispirited Stosur and broke for a 5-4 lead.

With her confidence restored she charged to the finish line, belting forehand and backhand winners and celebrating loudly as she arrived at match point.

Two points later, Stosur sent a forehand into net to hand the German victory.