By Alexandra D’Angelo || Contributing Writer
On Friday, September 8 and Sunday, September 10 two new tennis players were crowned champions at the US Open in New York City. On the women’s side Slone Stephens won the singles title and Rafael Nadal won the singles title on the men’s side. The US Open began in 1881 and this year marks the 136th year of the tournament which has always been held in New York City.
The US Open is a large spectacle in the area and around the world as it marks the fourth and final tennis major each year. At the beginning of the year, the first tennis major is the Australian Open, then the French Open, Wimbledon, and finally the US Open. The US Open, however, is the most memorable because it concludes the tennis season meaning that the winners will be remembered for several months before the next season begins.
If you don’t know who Rafael Nadal is, just turn on any sports network and he will be the center of attention. Nadal, from Spain, turned pro in 2001 and ever since then he has been winning majors non-stop. Since he turned pro, Nadal has won 74 titles and that number will only increase. At 31 years old, he is currently seated the number one male player in the world outshining Roger Federer, Andy Murray and many other excellent players.
In the finals of the US Open, Nadal was up against stiff competitor, Kevin Anderson from South Africa. However, Nadal brought out all of his strength in this match and was able to clench the victory in three short sets. The final score of this match was 6-3, 6-3, 6-4.
Sloane Stephens is fairly new to the tennis pro’s; acknowledging that, she won this tournament without even being seated. Considering that all of the top players are seated and Stephens still won is a major accomplishment. Stephens is only 24 years old and recognizing she was ranked 957th in the world last month and yet was still able to win the US Open, Sloane Stephens is the one that everyone should look out for.
Throughout the tournament Stephens had to beat highly skilled players in order to make it to the top, including Venus Williams. However, Stephens was able to overcome these obstacles and make it to the finals where she played Madison Keys.
Keys was seated 15th in this tournament but still had a heartbreaking loss when she got crushed by Stephens 6-3, 6-0. On the other hand, Stephens was completely blown away in shock that she was able to win the US Open.
“I always wanted to win a slam,” Stephens said in an interview with ABC News’ Robin Roberts. “I always thought about it, but I never like … pictured myself in that situation. Winning the last point … when it happened I was like, ‘Wait, what do I do now? Do I cry? Do I roll on the ground?’ I was just so shocked.”
This year the US Open was one to remember–it brought a veteran player back to the top and allowed a new player to experience all the glory that comes with winning a major.
First-year Alexandra D’Angelo is a contributing writer. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org.