Stephens: new ten­nis star

Daily Nation (Barbados) - - Tennis -

NEW YORK – There will never be an­other Ser­ena Wil­liams. Nor an­other Venus Wil­liams, for that mat­ter. The next gen­er­a­tion of US women’s ten­nis play­ers – and feel free to pick your ten best un­der 30 years old – are not com­bin­ing for 30 Grand Slam sin­gles ti­tles, 121 WTA ti­tles and 173 fi­nals ap­pear­ances.

But Satur­day rep­re­sented some­thing sig­nif­i­cant for Amer­i­can ten­nis, the con­clu­sion of a tour­na­ment in which the US women grabbed Amer­ica’s Grand Slam by the throat and owned it.

Sure, the US Open fi­nal be­tween Sloane Stephens and Madi­son Keys – the first all-amer­i­can women’s fi­nal since Ser­ena beat Venus in Emma Stone, Uzo Aduba, James Spader, and the rest of the bold­faced names in at­ten­dance to munch down any $20.25 lob­ster rolls.

The un­forced er­rors (Keys 30, Stephens 6) were a big­ger story than the win­ners (Keys 18, Stephens 10). But that Stephens, 24, and Keys, 22, were in a US Open fi­nal is sig­nif­i­cant. This looks like the be­gin­ning of some­thing big for both, and for Amer­i­can ten­nis.

When Stephens heard the amount win­ners re­ceive for win­ning the sin­gles draw – $3.7 mil­lion, the most ever in ten­nis his­tory for a sin­gle tour­na­ment – she looked shocked. “That’s a lot of money, my God,” she said on court. (Sports Il­lus­trated)

SLOANE STEPHENS pos­ing with her cham­pi­onship tro­phy af­ter cap­tur­ing the US Open. (AFP.)

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