“A tough day, obviously"
A year on and the 25-year-old is the No 3 seed, with an added steel in her game. So close to winning a second grand slam at Roland Garros this summer, where she lost in three sets to Simona Halep, the American showed belief and fighting spirit, just when she needed it most.
On Wednesday, Stephens recovered from a set down to record a 4-6, 7-5, 6-2 win over Anhelina Kalinina, a Ukrainian qualifier ranked 134, and move on to the third round.
“It was a tough day, obviously,” Stephens said, after a match that lasted two hours, 46 minutes, played right in the middle of the day. “She was playing really well, playing four matches already, qualies here, used to the conditions.”
“I just kind of had to weather the storm and wait for my opportunities. Obviously I wish I could have been playing a little bit better. That would have helped the situation. But I just found a way today, and sometimes it's not going to be the best, but you've just got to battle through.”