Sloane Stephens: Serena Williams Hasn’t ‘Said One Word to Me’
By Matt Cronin
In an interview with ESPN The Magazine, Sloane Stephens heavily criticizes Serena Williams, saying that the elder American hasn’t spoken to her since Stephens upset Williams in the Australian Open quarterfinals.
“She’s not said one word to me, not spoken to me, not said hi, not looked my way, not been in the same room with me since I played her in Australia,” Stephens said in a interview that was conducted prior to the U.S. Fed Cup win over Sweden last month, when both were on the team. “And that should tell everyone something, how she went from saying all these nice things about me to unfollowing me on Twitter.”
Stephens alleged that after she upset Williams in Melbourne, that not only did Williams unfollow her, but also put out a tweet she believed was directed at her that said, “I made you.”
“Like, seriously! People should know,” Stephens told the magazine. “They think she’s so friendly and she’s so this and she’s so that — no, that’s not reality! You don’t unfollow someone on Twitter, delete them off of BlackBerry Messenger. I mean, what for? Why?”
In the interview, Stephens said that she is still upset that the Williams sisters did not sign a poster she had of them when she saw them at a Fed Cup match when she was 12.
“I waited all day [for an autograph],” she said. “They walked by three times and never signed our posters.”
Stephens said because of that, she eventually decided that Kim Clijsters would be her favorite player.
Serena has never said that she was consistently mentoring Stephens, although she has been asked many times about it. She did work with Stephens a bit during a 2012 Fed Cup tie in Ukraine.
“It’s hard to be a real mentor when you’re still in competition,” Williams said prior to their Australian Open quarterfinal. “But I’m here to compete and do the best I can, as well as she. And she’s been doing really amazing. I’m really happy [for her].”
Stephens has a 2-7 record since leaving Australia and lost in the first round of Madrid to Daniela Hantuchova.
Williams, who won her first-round match in Madrid, has yet to respond to the criticisms, but her agent is aware of Stephens’ comments.