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Serena Williams: I’ll always be rooting for Sloane Stephens

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Serena Williams

Top-ranked Serena Williams is into the third round of the Madrid Open. (Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Serena Williams took the high road Tuesday in responding to Sloane Stephens’ scathing comments about her in an ESPN The Magazine story.

“I don’t really know. I don’t have many thoughts,” Williams told reporters in Spain after defeating Lourdes Dominguez Lino 6-2, 7-5 in the second round of the Madrid Open, answering the one question posed to her about Stephens. “I’m a big Sloane Stephens fan and always have been. I’ve always said that I think she can be the best in the world. I’ll always continue to think that and always be rooting for her.

“So I really just always wish her — and anyone, really, especially from America — the best. We don’t have that many American players, so it’s always exciting to see so many young players doing so well.”

Sharapova credits Stephens for honesty

Stephens told the magazine that Williams had stopped communicating with her after Stephens’ victory in their quarterfinal match at the Australian Open in January.

“Like, seriously! People should know,” Stephens said in a late-March interview. “They think she’s so friendly and she’s so this and she’s so that — no, that’s not reality! You don’t unfollow someone on Twitter, delete them off of BlackBerry Messenger. I mean, what for? Why?”

Stephens lost to Daniela Hantuchova in the first round in Madrid.

UPDATE: Stephens tweeted: “Guilty of being naive. Much respect 4 @serenawilliams , a champ & the GOAT. We spoke, we’re good. ONWARD!

WERTHEIM: No one looks good in Stephens-Williams spat

  • Published On May 07, 2013
  • 61 comments
    sparrowhawk0806
    sparrowhawk0806

    Well TonyC it is obvious your crystal ball needs cleaning.  I came back to see if you were gracious in your miscalls but no comment at all.  SERENA BEAT ERRANI.. SHE BEAT SHARAPOVA... I am annoyed they didn't televise that match though because Sharapova was much better than people thought she was going to be.  

    geegii95
    geegii95

    Those of you who calls or even think of Serena as a Bitch... I agree...please read below

    B-The Best in WTA Tennis, blasting her opponents all the time.

    I-Intangible - no one beats Serena, but Serena

    T- Tough...she cant be stopped

    C-Corageous- she dont care about all the negative talk, thats why she states, its hard to beat her.

    H-Happy, all the way to the bank, all the way to her Trouphy cabinet, all the way in life, she is making her goals and reaching them....( I will throw in an extrasmall h-for HATERS...that what all of you are!)

    So for those of you who take on the physical aspect of how she look, please look in the mirror. People lets stay focus on the game and not the looks.

    sparrowhawk0806
    sparrowhawk0806

    @TonyC1 Sharapova withdrew from the Italian Open citing illness.  Sloan Stephens is young and stupid.   Those two conditions sort of go hand in hand.  She is a good player and barring injuries should figure prominently in women's tennis future.  But for now she should shut up and play her game and enjoy the fact that in tennis's present she gets to play  a legend in the making.  I hope Serena plays for at least 5 more years with no injuries.

    TonyC1
    TonyC1

    The Madrid final will be Errani vs Sharapova....too bad williams, time for u to go home....

    Joanne Crudup
    Joanne Crudup

    I have read over a lot of these comments. I was not surprise to find so many ugly remarks regarding Serena.Serena and Venus are two beautiful women. These people who are Americans who can not supported the Williams sisters. Life must be sad. I feel sorry for them. Are they God fearing and loving people? I do not believe they are. In my life I have deal with people such as these. GOD will deal with these people. They do not have a good soul they walk in the flesh not in the spirit. They say when you die and you are dead. To be absent from the body is to be with GOD. I do not know where they will be the bottomless pit? I give all love and supported to the Williams sisters and their family. with much love Joanne

     

    tripletriplecombo
    tripletriplecombo

    Serena is focused on tennis. Sloane focused on her homemade high school drama! Grow up little girl! Can't hang, step off!

    ThidamonyCheas
    ThidamonyCheas

    Sloan seems very young from how she's carrying herself. 

    EugenePullinsJr.
    EugenePullinsJr.

    First Question:

    Who da hell is Sloan Stephens? never heard of her

    Scott53
    Scott53

    Sloane is acting very much like her age.  First she likes Serena, then she doesn't like Serena or Venus, and now she likes Serena again and thinks she is the greatest of all time?  Sloane definitely got played by someone whispering in her ear. 

     

    I also don't think Serena was upset by losing to her but instead was put off about Sloane's celebration of beating an injured (ankle and back) player as if she accomplished something huge!  Anyone who plays tennis a lot knows that is classless.  And next time you play that person, game on! 

    Syracuse,NY
    Syracuse,NY

    No I cannot say this is really important. I could care less who said what. Just enjoy the game.

    gnixon1
    gnixon1

    Our culture has always put up with ignorance and racism and yours show how much it still exists.  We don't give a DAMN what's said about us; especially behind these machines, cowardness and insecurity is usually the answer.  Fact being; no other Ouote/UnQuote "AMERICANS" outside of the BLACK race represents the US in Tennis or many of the other "Major Sports"!  I doubt if you're intelligent enough to look back on the evolution of 'Man;" you'll notice that the "Cave Mans" physical characteristics and features were derived from what?  "The Primate"!!  And yes; there are many of US who are very intelligent!  Maybe you should institute some of that rage and jealousy into your race and come up with the dominant "Champions" we are.  We're fine with Serena; a very strong, naturally built "Heck of a WOMAN"!  "We Can Handle It"!!!

    PS!  You probably need some Feminine Company; if you're cunning enough to know how to pursue them???????

    And Sloane; you weren't Bosom Buddies before the match, "Why After"?? 

    DarrylPrice
    DarrylPrice

    Maybe after Serena has won her 20th Grand Slam people will figure this out:    Above all else she is a competitor and it's probably better for her to have a little animosity to give her a competitive edge.  Secondly,  I don't where this idea came from that they are supposed to be best buds.  Is it because they're both black?   I mean if any of the other young american players -- Melanie Oudin,   Christina McHale, or Madison keys expressed a similar sentiment would there be a big story?  Probably not and that suggest more about us than it does about Serena Williams or Sloane Stevens.   Finally,  Sloane needs understand a thing or two about history.  Serena and Venus Williams' didn't grow up the daughter of a division I athlete mom and a professional football player dad.  They weren't taught the game by seasoned professionals in the best clubs in town.  They were for the most part the do-it-yourself project of determined and loving parents of modest means.   They were outsiders ...  and even as they began winning tournaments on the tour,  they often received less support at  from spectators at  U.S. venues than their foreign born opponents and often received jeers and hisses when playing abroad.  Serena has earned her stripes.   She's earned every accolade and she's earned every championship.   Instead of worrying about whether Serena is nice to her,  Sloane Stephens ought to take a hard look in the mirror and ask herself what she wants to achieve in tennis and whether or not she has the mental toughness to achieve it.   If her moping about being slighted by Serena is indication,  i'm guessing she doesn't.

    Ambientbake
    Ambientbake

    I believe the proper term when referring to it is a "She-Grilla".  It's defined as a life form with part male human DNA and part female gorilla DNA.

    virginia
    virginia

    no matter what venum Serena and Venus have had to endure during thier careers they have alway tried to maintain some sense of dignity and respect for all the other tennis players and the game itself for as long as i have been following tennis.They have tried to represent the United States with grace and sportmanship and played matches that had they been white americans more Americas would have proudly yelled from their roof tops we,re number one and would have been justified in doing so,thats how well they both played and continue to play the game.now here comes miss stephens(the wanna be) that still is,nt , with her clueless,ignorant, immature, disrespectful self- centered ramblings. little girl take some advise think before you speak, open your eyes and recognize the gifts named SERENA and VENUS WILLIAMS GOD himself gave to the game of tennis.    

    Mr. Smith1
    Mr. Smith1

    Serena is a stupid kneegrow gorilla.  the end. 

    DawnFawn
    DawnFawn

    Every1 is upset simply because I have a different observation of that match?  LOL

     

    I think you need to get a life if this is  the most important issue you're facing.   In fact, it's frivolous drivel. 

     

    G.A.L., people, G.A.L.!  

     

    LOL  ;)

    ox

     

    Ciao!

     

    JeanDeaux
    JeanDeaux

    sounds like a child upset because she didn't get what she wanted.   

    RobJohnson1
    RobJohnson1

    Thats what lifes about recognizing your falls getting up and moving....its also about forgiving oneself and others.....peace

     

    deanthology
    deanthology

    Who uses a blackberry anymore? Sloan needs to clean up her act.

    pyro21
    pyro21

    Way to go, Serena. Teach Sloane how it's done on and off the court.

    ddub06
    ddub06

    Sloane tweeted that she was guilty of being naive and that she has much respect for Serena and that Serena is a great champion and the GOAT.  She also mentioned that they spoke and are good and that she learned a lesson. 

    DawnFawn
    DawnFawn

    Serena and Sloane are not friends -- they're rivals.

    tracejuno
    tracejuno

    Twitter?... Blackberry Messenger?... Does it matter????

    You were both in Madrid - go ask her!

    Well, I am thirty years old.....

    JamieBreslow
    JamieBreslow

    Maybe it's called mental preparation Sloane. You don't become the greatest women's tennis player of all time by hanging out and tweeting your competition. Sorry she didn't want to be your BFF right now, but get over it. This isn't high school. If you want to ever be as good as Serena, you should start thinking the way she thinks. When all is over, there will hugs for everyone, but right now Williams is still a major factor of the game, and understandably not ready to hand over the torch just yet.

    Dave C
    Dave C

    Women's tennis?   Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Joe83
    Joe83

    Sloane just ruined all of her endorsement deals. She seems really immature and I am glad Serena took the high road.

    T.W.17227
    T.W.17227

     @TonyC1 Wrong AGAIN. Maria was SO scared of her 14th beat down in a row since 2004, that she took her butt out of Rome and SHE went home..lol... I mean Maria Didn't even defend her title because she was SCARED of being embarrassed again by Serena. Secondly, Serena won Rome, so take that you Serena-hating dolt!!! 51st WTA title and STILL #1 with a distant #2 behind her in the very over-hyped and over-rated Maria Sharapova...You know, you don't know ANYTHING about tennis. All you do is keep your big trap open so flies can go in there..lol...

    geegii95
    geegii95

    TonyC1...you are so wrong...stop being a miserable hater...its Serena & Sharapova!

    TonyC1
    TonyC1

     @EugenePullinsJr.

     Start watching the Game and pay attention, this way you will know all the players...

    DarrylPrice
    DarrylPrice

     @Ambientbake .... say what you will be she's accomplished more than you will in your miserable life.   I suspect that you're jealous because the DNA passed to you is lacking.

    Ambientbake
    Ambientbake

     @Mr. Smith1

     I believe the proper term when referring to it is a "She-Grilla".  It's defined as a life form with part male human DNA and part female gorilla DNA.

    juliemc44
    juliemc44

     @Mr. Smith1 imbecile! you must be a product of inbreeding! your low IQ shines though your comment

    Belinda De shay
    Belinda De shay

     @ddub06

     That's very interesting that Sloane admits to being naïve now, it seems she was very sure of herself during were blasting of Serena. One would think that a coach or trainer or someone in her camp would advise her of what would happen if she decided to go forth with her comments. I feel bad for her because this will never go away.

    DawnFawn
    DawnFawn

     @ddub06

     

    Awwww...  I just love a happy ending.  Thanks for sharing that.

    EugeneSaxe
    EugeneSaxe

     @tracejuno You mean like, face-to-face?  I'm surprised people still play tennis on the same court at the same time.

    DeeDalton
    DeeDalton

     @Dave C Have you been watching women's tennis lately?  It's way better than the men's game is right now because it has more interesting personalities and players.  The men's game is mostly hard serve and hope they get a racket on the return, where the women actually have serve and volley.  Check it out, you might like it!

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    DawnFawn
    DawnFawn

     @Joe83  Serena did resent that Sloane beat her, and that's only human, but I'm guessing that it will never happen again.  The only reason why Sloane beat Serena was because the media blew her up so much that Serena felt threatened.  Serena freaked and lost.  Sloane was also afraid of Serena, but somehow made it threw the match because no one expected her to win.    I love them both, and hope they have a private chat and get over this.  They should make amends, and support each other.

     

    TonyC1
    TonyC1

     @geegii95  Hey I'm not a hater...I just think they give too much attention to williams and not enough to the other players. I mean how much air time did they give williams vs air time they gave errani ??? Even when errani won the point all they show is williams...You have to admit that's not right. First set looked pretty good for errani. Sharapova will take the Championship!!!

    TonyC1
    TonyC1

     @DarrylPrice  @Ambientbake

     I doubt that anyone would want the looks of serena. There is not enough money out there, that would make anyone change places with her/it. She's one of those...only a mother could love.

    itsmeagain
    itsmeagain

    @DawnFawn @ddub06 more like saving face. this is no happy ending.

    itsmeagain
    itsmeagain

    @DawnFawn nonsense......Serena was clearly injured. i doubt she was resentful. more like she was tired of sloane and the media blowing their relationship up into this mentorship and wanted to nip it in the bud. Have you read the things sloane was saying during that time? She was clearly basking the in glory of a friendship with Serena that never existed.

    dayo1026_2000
    dayo1026_2000

     @DawnFawn  @Joe83 You couldn't be more wrong.  Serena injured her ankle and threw out her back in the match against Sloane.  Did you not watch the match and see how injured Serena was.  Serena did not freak and lose.  She got injured and re-injured the ankle the day before in her doubles match.  She was up a set and a break in the second when she hurt her back.  It's amazing how you can make such an unfounded comment when the whole world knows Sloane beat an injured Serena.  That is not to say that she couldn't have beat Serena without the injury, but that was not the case this time.

    DawnFawn
    DawnFawn

     @Joe83 Serena did resent that Sloane beat her, and that's only human, but I'm guessing that it will never happen again.  The only reason why Sloane beat Serena was because the media blew her up so much that Serena felt threatened.  Serena freaked and lost.  Sloane was also afraid of Serena, but somehow made it threw the match because no one expected her to win.    I love them both, and hope they have a private chat and get over this.  They should make amends, and support each other.

     

    DeeDalton
    DeeDalton

     @TonyC1  @geegii95 If that's the case, your problem should be with the broadcasters of the event, not with Serena Williams.  She's not in control of the cameras.

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    nzelu
    nzelu

     @TonyC1  @DarrylPrice  @Ambientbake Oh God save the Queen of Ladies tennis,Long live the Queen[Serena] long live the tennis,only the fools hate the Queen,we love the Queen

    Raynepayne
    Raynepayne

     @geegii95  @Raynepayne  @DawnFawn  @dayo1026_2000 What's interesting about Sloane is one would think she would wait to have some type of legacy before disrespecting a hall-of-famer.  I am sooo disappointed in her lack of country pride and truly her lack of acknowledgement to a hero of American tennis.  You do not have to like Serena as a person, but she leaves her heart and determination on the court for herself and her country.  This past olympics was proof of that.

    empress32
    empress32

     @DawnFawn  @dayo1026_2000 anybody with sense know serena would've beat sloane.. cmon  now.. she was injured and DAyo you are right. if serena wasn't injured sloane would've been beat... common sense! End of Story.

    Raynepayne
    Raynepayne

     @DawnFawn  @dayo1026_2000 Actually, I agree with you BLane1.  I hate I responded to DawnFawn because dayo1026_2000 responded.  I hadn't realized that.  Sloane has not gotten out of the first round of any tournament since.  And did you see the sportswomanship during the Fed Cup?  Venus gave her the flag to celebrate the victory...That's class...

    EneBelleh
    EneBelleh

    @DawnFawn @Joe83 Serena was very injured and in spite of that still almost pull the match out. I am hesitant to give Sloane any real props until she defeats a really healthy Serena. That is highly unlikely because Serena healthy and at her best is the best and Sloane will be getting dealt with.

    Raynepayne
    Raynepayne

     @DawnFawn  @Joe83 Serena didn't freak out.  She was injured.  First with her ankle and then her back when she ran for a net ball....