Former world No. 3 Sloane Stephens said she was "proud" after closing out Sofia Kenin even after she missed out on multiple match points. On Monday, Stephens edged out 2020 Australian Open champion Kenin 6-2 6-7 (5) 7-5.
Stephens missed out on four match points in the second set as Kenin somehow managed to force a decider. In the end, Stephens realized her sixth match point to edge out Kenin in three hours of play. "I don't think I've ever been in a match where I've had multiple match points over the course of the match and didn't lose my mind, so I'm just very proud," Stephens said after the match, per the WTA website.
Stephens edged out Kenin in three sets
Stephens got off to a very fast start, breaking Kenin twice to easily win the first set. After easily winning the first set, Stephens opened a comfortable 5-1 second set lead. Down by a set and two breaks, Kenin refused to give as she first saved two match points on her serve in the seventh game.
Then, Kenin saved two match points on Stephens' serve in the eighth game to get one break back. After serving out the ninth game and breaking Stephens again in the 10th game, Kenin fully got back into the match. Kenin saved a break point in the 11th game, before winning the tie-break to send the match into a decider.
In the third set, Stephens served out the opening game before the rain suspended the match. When they returned, Stephens broke Kenin in the second game for a 2-0 and then had a 40-15 on her serve before the rain again suspended the match.
When the match again resumed, Kenin recovered from a 5-2 deficit to tie the set to five games apiece. After failing to realize her fifth match point in the 10th game, Stephens was able to keep her focus and serve out the 11th game for a 6-5 lead.
In the 12th game, Stephens broke Kenin and realized her sixth match point to seal the victory. Stephens plays Maria Sakkari next.