Nearly a year ago, Sloane Stephens shocked the tennis world with a dramatic upset of the mighty Serena Williams at the Australian Open. It placed the youngster in the semi-finals of the tournament and raised expectations to new heights. While Serena continued to dominate throughout the year, winning both the French Open and Wimbledon, American tennis found hope in a new star that should compete for Grand Slams long after the Williams sister quit the game.
But unfortunately, the rest of 2013 did not see Sloane Stephens conquer tennis with a tournament victory. She made progress in reaching the Wimbledon quarterfinals, but she has yet to even reach a final. However, tennis fans often forget just how young Stephens is. At 20 years old, she can’t even order a drink at a bar!
But she sure can serve a tennis ball, and her athletic play has Americans excited for the upcoming year. Able to stay strong throughout the duration of matches, she is clearly in shape and capable of becoming an all-time great in the game. But first she has to get over that initial hump and win a tournament. Could this be the year for Sloane Stephens?
She will have every opportunity to do so. Ranked 13th in the most recent WTA Tennis Rankings, Stephens surely has the goods to match up against the game’s best players. In addition to her famous victory over Serena Williams, she also defeated Maria Sharapova in the Cincinnati Open last summer. Both matches were won on hard courts, which could be her most favorable surface.
With the hard court Australian Open set to begin, all eyes will be on how Sloane Stephens comes out in 2014. Do you think this will be a big year for her?
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