Venus Williams Becomes an Aunt Again, Reaches 15th Round of 16 at US Open
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(September 1, 2017) FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – Venus Williams became an aunt again before reaching her 15th round of 16 at the US Open on Friday. Sister Serena gave birth to a 6-pound, 13-ounce daughter at St. Mary’s Medical Center in West Palm Beach, Florida almost four hours before Venus took the court for her match.
Williams beat Maria Sakkari of Greece 6-3, 6-4.
Williams took no questions about her sister, but did talk about her tennis.
“I’m a real professional, because I have been doing this for a long time, so when the first ball starts, it’s a ton of excitement out there. So, you know, this is the US Open.
“My best tennis this year has come at the majors,” said the No.9 seed. “I don’t play nearly as much as some of my contemporaries, but this year when I have played, it’s definitely been quality tennis. That’s exactly what I want, and obviously to play my best tennis at the Big 4.”
Venus has now made the fourth round of all of the majors this year, the first time since 2010.
Despite reaching the fourth round, Venus has been eliminated from contending for the No. 1 ranking at the end of the tournament.
Garbine Muguruza winning her match on Friday removed Williams from challenging for the top spot at the end of this event. The lady from Spain defeated No. 31 seed Magdalena Rybarikova of Slovakia 6-1, 6-1. This year’s Wimbledon winner has dropped only nine games so far in Flushing Meadows.
“I’m taking every match as a final here.” Muguruza said. My big shots were there. I went a lot forward to the net. I think overall I did a good match.”
She’ll play two-time Wimbledon winner Petra Kvitova in the fourth round. “Tough match, actualyl,” Mugurza said. “I think she’s an incredible player. It’s going to be interesting. It’s a good fourth round to play. We played before and I won, she won, so I’m expecting a good match.”
Asked about Serena Williams’ baby she said: “Baby girl? Well, I hope she doesn’t play tennis.”
Kvitova demolished Frenchwoman Caroline Garcia 6-0, 64 in the first day match.
Sloane Stephens continues her comeback with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Ashley Barty to make the “Sweet 16.” She had been sidelined for 11 months with a left foot injury.
Since returning at Wimbledon ranked at 934, the 24-year-old American has reached a pair of semifinals in Toronto and in Cincinnati and is now in the top 100 at No. 83.
Obviously I haven’t been in the second week of a slam in a long time,” Stephens said to media. It’s nice. Excited to be here. Especially at a home slam. I mean, nothing really better.”
“I thought I played all around pretty solid. I mean, obviously Ash is a great player. She’s tricky to play because she does a lot of different things. I was happy that through everything that she kind of gave to me, I was able to just stay consistent and play my game.”
In her next match, she’ll play Julia Goerges.
“Every time I played her, we’ve had tough matches,” Stephens said. “The last two times I played her, I played her on a day where I played two matches in the same day. I’m looking forward to her being my first match of the day,”she said with a smile.
“Yeah, that’s pretty much it. I think it will be a good match. We always play well against each other, so looking forward to it.”
In the night session it was abttle between wildcards, 30-year-old Maria Sharapova defeated fellow 18-year-old Sofia Kenin 7-5, 6-2 to reach the round of 16.
“I wasn’t surprised with the way she came out and competed, Sharapova said of Kenin. “She was down I believe a few match points in the previous match. She’s a grinder. She’ll get many balls back. Despite not having the experience, she’s a tough player. She’s played a lot of matches this year. She’s moving up the rankings. So I knew I had to be ready. I mean, you’re in the third round of a Grand Slam. I haven’t been there in a while. No matter who you face, you know they’ve already won a couple of matches.”
Sharapova has now moved into the top 100 with the victory. “The goal is to keep winning matches, obviously to keep improving,” she said. “I mean, even when I was young, ranking is just not something that I’ve focused on or paid attention to. Even when I hadn’t been No. 1 in the world, it just wasn’t really that big a goal of mine.”
Sharapova will play 16th seed Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia, for a spot in the quarterfinals.
Karen Pestaina at the US Open