Sloane Stephens wins US Open for first Grand Slam title

Stephens only returned to the tour at Wimbledon after missing 11 months having undergone left foot surgery.

The 24-year-old joins Kim Clijsters as one of only two unranked players to ever win the women's title at the U.S. Open.

With her natural speed and shotmaking abilities, Stephens simply refused to surrender to the onslaught of Williams' shotmaking on Thursday night.

"There are NO words to describe how proud and how happy I am", Williams said on Twitter.

Surgery followed in January and for the next 16 weeks Stephens was on crutches and unable to put any pressure on her foot. "I just try to focus on myself". "Oh my god. That's a stat. Snaps for me".

It was the first all-American US Open women's semi-finals since 1981 and the first at any Slam since Wimbledon in 1985.

Stephens, Keys and CoCo Vandeweghe, all of whom made at least the semifinals at this year's Open, are all 25 years old or younger and have tons more tennis to play in their primes.

On Monday, she would have climbed 940 spots in one month. But her problems on Saturday were more in the mind than with the body.

But Stephens had made just $310,546 in 2017, and had never received a check anywhere close to that large. You have to go through it.

It was not something they would have paid much heed to, if any, but just as it was 20 years ago when Chanda Rubin played the first match on the renamed show court, the significance will manifest itself in years to come.

She claimed a spectacular eight games in a row at the end of the first set and throughout the second to seal victory.

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"There have been three nights we've gotten back to the hotel at like 2:30 or 3 in the morning", Christine said.

It came with 39 days. King won back to back titles in 1971 and 1972 and then another (her last) in 1974 before passing the torch to Chris Evert. I don't think I'm going to make it. From there, though, Stephens climbed, and then climbed dizzyingly.

After that, she went on the 8-3 run, reaching two semi-finals in Toronto and in Cincinnati. Asked in a rollicking news conference if the title had fed her hunger for another, she wisecracked, "Of course, girl".

"Did you see that cheque that lady handed me? Obviously I didn't play my best tennis today and was disappointed", Keys said.

It all did seem dreamlike, unreal. "I think that was my toughest time". I always wanted to win a Grand Slam. Now, she said in the odd language of tennis, "Now, my ranking is higher than my protected ranking". Her ranking plummeted to 957. "If someone would have told me I'd win the US Open, I'd say it was impossible".

Here, Press Association Sport picks out five things to know about Stephens.

Stephens and Keys have met only once before, with Stephens winning in straight sets in Miami in 2015.

But Saturday saw her manage just three.

Sloane Stephens has won the first set in the U.S. Open women's final.

At the US Open, Keys has allowed her overall power game and serve to do her talking. She is the daughter of swimmer Sybil Smith and professional American football player John Stephens.


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