Sloane Stephens and Heather Watson lose, Sam Stosur wins Aussie battle

Sloane Stephens and Heather Watson’s Nuremberg Cup journey is over while Sam Stosur won the battle of the Australians in Strasbourg.

US Open champion Stephens had accepted a wild card entry into the German event, but her opening match against Yulia Putintseva was suspended at 5-7, 6-4, 3-3 due to darkness on Tuesday evening.

Putintseva returned on Wednesday morning to wrap up the match 5-7, 6-4, 7-6 (7-3).

When asked after the match how she felt about losing in the first round, Stephens replied: “Not too bad. I am going to Paris now.”

Watson, who won her first match since January on Tuesday, was back to losing ways as she went down 6-3, 6-3 against Fanny Stoller from Hungary.

Belgian Kirsten Flipkens also reached the quarter-final as she beat Nadia Podoroska from Argentina 7-6 (8-6), 6-2.

At the Strasbourg Open, defending champion Stosur was too good for fellow Australian Daria Gavrilova as she beat the second seed 6-3, 6-4 to set up a last-eight encounter against Dominika Cibulkova.

Top seed Ashleigh Barty from Australia also advanced as she saw off Pauline Parmentier from France 6-1, 6-4 while the third ranked Russian Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova beat compatriot Natalia Vikhlyantseva 6-4, 6-4.