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Stephens marvels at money and journey to US Open glory

  • Jim Slater

    Agence France-Presse

New York, United States | Sun, September 10, 2017 | 01:58 pm
Stephens marvels at money and journey to US Open glory Sloane Stephens of the United States celebrates defeating Madison Keys of the United States after their Women's Singles finals match on Day Thirteen of the 2017 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on Sept. 9, 2017 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Agence France -Presse/Al Bello/Getty Images)

Worries didn't end for Sloane Stephens after winning her first Grand Slam title Saturday at the US Open, recalling the fabulous photographs of past champions she admired along the hallways of Arthur Ashe Stadium.

"Everyone has the cutest photos on the wall in here with this trophy and that's what I remember seeing most," Stephens said. 

"So when I was taking my pictures I was worried about my boob sweat because I was like this is a picture they are probably going to use and I look terrible."

Such natural, candid and comedic comments summed up the champion's mood after her 6-3, 6-0 victory over fellow American and friend Madison Keys for a top prize of $3.7 million (3.07 million euros).

Stephens, who won only $310,000 this year after being sidelined for 11 months until July by a left foot injury, said her desire for more major titles was definitely fueled.

Sloane Stephens of the United States poses with the championship trophy during the trophy presentation after the Women's Singles finals match on Day Thirteen of the 2017 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on Sept. 9, 2017 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. Sloane Stephens defeated Madison Keys in the second set with a score of 6-3, 6-0. Sloane Stephens of the United States poses with the championship trophy during the trophy presentation after the Women's Singles finals match on Day Thirteen of the 2017 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on Sept. 9, 2017 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. Sloane Stephens defeated Madison Keys in the second set with a score of 6-3, 6-0. (Agence France -Presse/Abbie Parr/Getty Images)

"Of course," Stephens said. "Did you see that check that lady handed me? Like, yes. Man, if that doesn't make you want to play tennis, I don't know what will."

Asked if she felt bad about inflicting the first 6-0 final set in a US Open women's final since 1976 upon her friend, Stephens noted Keys had a runner-up prize of $1.825 million.

"Bad for her? She was in the finals, too," Stephens said. "Did you see the check she's about to get? I'm sure she'll be just fine."

Told she made only six unforced errors in her 61-minute triumph, Stephens was thrilled and shocked.

"Shut the front door. I don't think that's ever happened to me before. Oh, my God. That's a stat. Snaps for me," Stephens said, snapping her fingers for emphasis.

Stephens has already made her mark in the US Open locker room, noting -- "They already engraved my name on the locker. Like, hello. This is awesome."

But she was unsure if she had "arrived" as a player.

"I don't know if I have arrived or already arrived, been arrived," she said. "But I do know I'm a US Open champion."

Stephens, 24, is the girlfriend of footballer Jozy Altidore, who she met in the fifth grade. 

The American international scored two goals in Toronto's 4-0 Major League Soccer victory over San Jose while Stephens was in the final.

"I'm happy that he scored two goals. That's really good," Stephens said. "He should have got a hat trick. It would have been such a good day."

Stephens admitted to feel nervous the night before the match, saying she was searching for things to do.

"I was literally in my room twiddling my thumbs, looking at car reviews last night on Auto Trader. That's how bored I was. I didn't have anything to do," she said, noting she wasn't planning on buying a car.

"No, I was just looking at safety reviews, honestly," Stephens said. "That's kind of weird, but that's what I was doing."

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