Monday, March 12, 2018

Stephens falls to Kasatkina at Indian Wells

Sloane Stephens, playing at Indian Wells last year, fell to 3-10 since winning
the U.S. Open last September. Photo by Mal Taam
   Sloane Stephens' post-U.S. Open letdown continued today with a mild upset.
   Stephens, seeded 13th, lost to Daria Kasatkina, a 20-year-old Russian seeded 20th, 6-4, 6-3 in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells.
   "I mean, not going to be too down about it," Stephens told reporters following the afternoon match in 16,100-seat Stadium 1. "There's always next week and the week after."
   Stephens, a 24-year-old Fresno product, fell to 3-10 since winning her first Grand Slam title last September. All three victories have come in her last two tournaments. She reached the quarterfinals in Acapulco the week before Indian Wells.
   Kasatkina, ranked 19th, has beaten all four of the current Grand Slam champions in the last year: Jelena Ostapenko (French Open), Caroline Wozniacki (Australian Open), Garbine Muguruza (Wimbledon) and Stephens.
   Kasatkina is scheduled to meet Wozniacki, seeded second, on Tuesday in 8,000-seat Stadium 2 not before 6 p.m. for a quarterfinal berth.
   Sam Querrey, a 30-year-old San Francisco native, reached the doubles quarterfinals with Gilles Muller, a 34-year-old left-hander from Luxembourg. They upset fourth-seeded Jamie Murray of Great Britain and Bruno Soares of Brazil 7-5, 6-7 (4) [10-2].
   Muller and Querrey will play the winner of Tuesday's match between fifth-seeded Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut, the 2016 champions from France, and Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay and Horacio Zeballos of Argentina.    

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