By Chris Oddo | Sunday, March 23, 2014
Sloane Stephens fell 6-1, 6-0 to Caroline Wozniacki on Sunday in Miami, inspiring comparisons to Bernard Tomic on Twitter.
Photo Source: Corleve
Sloane Stephens tossed in a real clunker against Caroline Wozniacki on Sunday at the Sony Open in Miami, losing 6-1, 6-0 and dropping the first 13 points of the second set in one of the most lopsided losses of her career.
It was the ninth bagel Stephens was fed in her career, but the single game that she took off Wozniacki was the least she's ever claimed in a full match (she also lost 6-1, 6-0 to Kaia Kanepi at Estoril in 2012, but was only ranked 83 in the world at that time).
Stephens summed it up aptly when she told reporters “It was just straight-up bad.”
Wozniacki, who wore a look of surprise while shaking hands with Stephens (as if to say: "That's it?") after the match had ended, was the beneficiary of 37 unforced errors off of Stephens' racquet. The former No. 1, who has taken a boatload of criticism during her career for various reasons, showed some sympathy for the 21-year-old American while speaking with reporters, saying “I think we all have matches like this. I mean, last week I played Jankovic, and I just was out there and trying everything but nothing was going my way. You know, it's not a fun situation when you're on that side of the net. It's tennis. Sometimes it goes that way and you have to step up and keep going forward.”
The crowd in Miami also showed compassion for the struggling Stephens. They urged her on at various stages of the match, even breaking into “Let's Go Sloane!” chants, to no avail.
On Twitter, and in the Tennis Channel broadcast booth, the vibe wasn't nearly as sympathetic.
According to Courtney Nguyen's Twitter feed, Mary Carillo called Stephens out for complacency.
Though Stephens looked out of sorts--and yes, she sprayed errors like she was a fire hydrant hit by a two-ton truck--it never appeared to this writer that she was trying to be cool or didn't care. Maybe she tried too hard to hit through the defense-first Wozniacki, but she clearly wasn't trying to be cool in this scenario. She was just simply struggling with her game, her confidence and the magnitude of a Miami night session.
Whatever the case, it was a bad match for Stephens. One she'll likely be better off forgetting. And she might not want to read Twitter for a few days either.
Stephens, who became the first American woman to reach the Indian Wells quarterfinals since 2008 a week ago, will hope to get her game back on track in Charleston next week. “Not really anything I'm going to cry too much over,” she said. “I'm just going to get back to work and get ready for Charleston next week.”