One of the promising American youngsters on the tour, Sloane Stephens, has officially confirmed her participation in the ASB Classic in Auckland at the start of the 2015 season.
Stephens, ranked No. 28 in the WTA rankings, is the second highest ranked American female following Serena Williams.
“I am really excited to be starting my year in Auckland for what will be my first experience of playing the ASB Classic main draw,” says Stephens. “I reached my first Grand Slam semi-final in Australia after a good start to the year, so I am hoping Auckland will enable me to go one better!”
It has been a mostly forgettable year for Stephens. Since losing in the first round of the Wimbledon Championships to Maria Kirilenko, she began her hard court season with a loss to Christina McHale in Washington, before rebounding with slightly better showings in Montreal and Cincinnati, where she reached the second and third round respectively. She has accumulated a 3-3 record during the US Open Series and then lost her second round match at the US Open to Sweden’s Johanna Larsson.
She is coming off a opening round upset loss to Silvia Soler-Espinosa in Guangzhou.
“We had a stellar women’s field last year, and we’re now looking to the next generation of women’s tennis to build on that,” says Tournament Director, Karl Budge. “Sloane is absolutely leading the charge for this next wave of champions, so we are thrilled to have her joining the ASB Classic field.”
The ASB Classic takes place between Jan. 5-10 in Auckland, New Zealand.