Defending Open champ Stephens gets past Azarenka

ABS-CBN Sports on Sep 01, 2018 08:50 AM
Defending Open champ Stephens gets past Azarenka
Sloane Stephens returns a shot to Victoria Azarenka, of Belarus, during the third round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Friday, Aug. 31, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

NEW YORK (AP) — Defending U.S. Open champion Sloane Stephens grabbed the last three games after a brief break while the Arthur Ashe Stadium roof was shut because of a light rain and beat two-time runner-up Victoria Azarenka 6-3, 6-4 to reach the fourth round.

Stephens had gone from leading 3-1 to trailing 4-3 in the second set when drops fell and the decision was made to close the arena.

When Stephens ended the match with a cross-court forehand winner, she pumped both arms repeatedly. After shaking hands with Azarenka, Stephens again celebrated that way.

The No. 3 seed Stephens will face No. 15 Elise Mertens next.

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