Sloane Stephens news: Former US Open champion grabs glory in Mexico

Sloane Stephens 2017 US Open champion

Former world No 3 Sloane Stephens beat Marie Bouzkova in the final of the Guadalajara Open on Sunday to win her seventh WTA title, and the first in nearly five years.

It only took Stephens two hours and 28 minutes to defeat her opponent, beating the Czech 7-5, 1-6, 6-2 to claim victory.

Bouzkova took the lead initially when in the first set she got an early break, but Stephens capitalized on when she got a break in the 11th game and she was able to serve for the set, which she successfully did.

Once the former US Open champion broke the 23-year-old in the sixth game of the deciding set the match was already pretty much a done deal and Stephens went on to be crowned champion.

“It’s the beginning of the season, so there’s still a lot of tennis to be played, but I’m excited to be able to put some matches together,” the French Open finalist explained in her post-match interview.

“Excited that I was able to do that, get a title, and hopefully continue on with that momentum, I think I prepared all last year, I committed to training and my fitness and everything – obviously I didn’t get the results right away, but now seeing the fruits of that labour blossom is nice.

“I still want to get back to where I was, that’s still really important to me, I think it’s possible, doable, so I’m really excited about that.”

The last time Stephens won a WTA title was at the 2018 Miami Open, but Bouzkova is still searching for her first, despite having been in three finals.

Both players are now due to play in the Monterrey Open, with the American set to play Mayar Sherif and the Czech will face Sara Errani tomorrow in the opening round.

The notable name of Emma Raducanu is missing from the list of participants as she was forced to withdraw from the competition due to a hip injury she sustained at the Abierto Akron Zapopan last week, but other attendees include Leylah Fernandez and Heather Watson.

The Mexico-based tournament started today (February 28) and concludes on March 6.