Former US Open champion Sloan Stevens was knocked out of the US Open after a shock 6-3, 6-4 loss to Russian teenager Anna Kalinskaya on Tuesday.
The 11th seed, who won the title in 2017, survived two chances to win the match, but failed in the third after a strong backhand from the Russian.
Stevens said: “I was playing point well and point something and point well. Unsteadiness in the level did not help me at all.
“She did a great job and was constantly fighting. She didn’t give me a chance to play,” she said.
Kalinskaya, who made her first Grand Slam match in the evening and made her debut at Arthur Ashe Main Stadium, showed no signs of tension in the Stevens match, which reached the last 16 in Cincinnati.
The 20-year-old Russian, who won three qualifying games to reach the draw, broke Stevens from the first available opportunity to lead 5-3 in the first set and did not delay later.
“I have a great feeling of winning the first game on this pitch,” Kalinskaya said. “I just tried to be focused and not to think too much and just think about my level.”
Kalinskaya lost once and managed to take advantage of 3 of 4 chances to break the American, who enjoyed the support of fans.
In the next round, Kalinskaya will play American Kristi Ahn, who surprised and beat Svetlana Kuznetsova earlier Tuesday.
Source: Sky News