COMPOSED! 2017 Champion Sloane Stephens Upsets 17yo Coco Gauff at US Open 2021 R2

Published 09/01/2021, 8:27 PM EDT
Sep 1, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Cori Gauff of the USA hits to Sloane Stephens of the USA on day three of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports


In an all-American clash, 2017 champion Sloane Stephens upset 17-year-old Coco Gauff at the US Open 2021 second round. However, the outcome does not convey the tennis they played on Arthur Ashe under closed roof. Stephens reached the third round for the seventh time in her professional career.

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Before this match, the 28-year-old Stephens had overcome her best friend on Tour, Madison Keys, in three sets. Similarly, the teenager showed Poland’s Magda Linette an exit in the first round.

Moreover, it was the first professional meeting between Stephens and Gauff. But after this, it seems the two you would take on many more battles in the future. The final score of their match: 6-4, 6-2.

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Coco Gauff vs Sloane Stephens, Set 1: US Open 2021 R2

Both Gauff and Stephens started the match dominating their service game. Quickly, the two reached 2-2 in the opening set.

Until 3-3, the 21st seed Gauff had a 90% first serve conversion, whereas the unseeded Stephens had a 100% conversion rate. Indeed, there was nothing to differentiate the two so far.

Sep 1, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Sloane Stephens of the USA after winning the first set against Cori Gauff of the USA on day three of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Eventually, the experience came on top of the young, finding two break points at 4-4. Gauff, then, served her second double fault of the match, asking Stephens to suddenly serve for the opening set.

Despite saving a set point and enormous fan support behind her, the American teenager lost the set 6-4. Only one weak game cost her the set.

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Gauff vs Stephens, Set 2: US Open 2021 R2

For the second set, the duo again started building their game from the bottom. But this time, Stephens had to see off a break point to bring the set to 2-2.

Sep 1, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Cori Gauff of the USA hits to Sloane Stephens of the USA on day three of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Most significantly, the 28-year-old managed to unnerve Gauff in the fifth game of the second set. Her discpline resulted in getting her a set and a break lead. Hence, to come back in this match, the young American needed to pull up her socks.

Ultimately, the calm and collected Stephens got the better of Gauff. Although the teenager tried to keep up with the extraordinary returns from her opponent, she couldn’t.

At 5-2, the 28-year-old served for the match and comfortably closed it. Consequently, the American favorite Gauff is out of the tournament, losing to former champion 6-4, 6-2.

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In the third round, Stephens will meet the winner between Angelique Kerber and Anhelina Kalinina. Given her resolution, she could go on to repeat 2017 this year.

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Do you think Stephens can win the US Open 2021 title?

Watch this story: Top Racket Smashing Moments at Us Open Over the Years

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Purav Joshi

1127 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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