While the battle between Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro and Germany’s Angelique Kerber was in full swing, the second fourth-round match was on its way. Defending champion Serena Williams met compatriot Sloane Stephens at the Arthur Ashe Stadium and looked for avenging this year’s loss to the younger colleague in the Australian Open quarterfinals. The two had met in Brisbane this year as well, also in the quarterfinals, but the world No.1 was victorious then.
During the much-awaited all-American encounter, Sloane Stephens gave her best in the one hour and 27 minutes. In the tight first set Serena suffered one break of serve, but in the end her experience prevailed as she capitalized on two of the eight break points she earned. The 15th-seeded Stephens had almost twice as much unforced errors as Serena in that set. The second set was a breeze for Serena and she ended it in 35 minutes, hitting just two unforced errors. Final score: 6-4 6-1.
Serena’s quarterfinal opponent will be seed No.18 Carla Suarez Navarro, who will need all the rest in the world after her tough fourth-round victory over Kerber. (photo: © Neal Trousdale)