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Women’s US Open Championship Match Is Finally Upon Us

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The women’s championship match is set at the US Open after Thursday saw semifinal action with the “Fantastic Four” Americans fighting it out for a place in the final.

Sloane Stephens and Madison Keys will clash in the first all-American women’s singles final at the US Open since the Williams’ sisters met in 2002.

Both women were highly-rated prospects at a young age, each reaching the Australian Open semi-finals at the age of 19, and their careers remained on an upward trajectory until injuries last year.

Neither of Saturday’s finalists played at this year’s first Grand Slam in Australia as they were both injured. But players returned at Wimbledon after undergoing surgery this year, unseeded Stephens to her foot and 15th seed Keys on her wrist.

Sloane Stephens returns a shot against Venus Williams during their Semifinal match at the 2017 US Open

Stephens has been in spectacular form of late, which has seen her win 14 of her last 16 matches, including her most recent victory over Venus Williams on Thursday.

“I knew that it was going to be tough,” said Stephens.

“I was in a walking boot like a month before I played Wimbledon. I knew I was going to have to play my way into shape, and I think I’ve done that pretty well.”

83rd ranked Stephens, who was ranked 957th in the world six weeks ago stands a chance of moving into the top 20 of the WTA rankings if she goes on to win the US Open title.

Madison Keys reacts against Elina Svitolina during their match at the 2017 US Open

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keys underwent wrist surgery last November but continued to feel pain after coming back in March, and required another operation after the French Open in June.

“It’s been a big weight off of my shoulders and I’m playing really free,” said Keys.

“More than anything, I’m just really, really enjoying my time on the court. I think that’s been a massive part of why I have been playing well.”

Stephens and Keys are very close friends but they will definitely put that aside as they make their Grand Slam final debuts on Arthur Ashe Stadium at 21:00 BST on Saturday.

“She’s probably one of my closest friends on tour,” Stephens said of Keys.

“Love her to death. It’s obviously going to be tough. It’s not easy playing a friend.”

Both players know each other very well but have only met once professionally, with Stephens winning in straight sets in Miami two years ago.

Whoever wins the title on Saturday will become the first American woman outside of the Williams sisters to win a Grand Slam title since Jennifer Capriati at the 2002 edition of the Australian Open.

 

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