Stephens Upset, Querrey Advances at Citi Open
WASHINGTON (AP) — Sam Querrey advanced despite not having his giant-slaying best. Sloane Stephens didn't have any of her best and is going home.
The eighth-seeded Querrey beat Bjorn Fratangelo 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-4 at the Citi Open on Tuesday, while the second-seeded Stephens was upset by Japan's Risa Ozaki 6-2, 6-1. Querrey was feeling confident coming off a trip to the Wimbledon quarterfinals that featured a victory against world No. 1 Novak Djokovic.
Center court under the lights at the Rock Creek Park Tennis Center was a little different, but Querrey battled back from losing a first-set tiebreak to beat Fratangelo and avenge a defeat at the French Open.
"Even without the Novak win and just coming out it would've been tough," Querrey said. "It was one of those matches I just had to fight my way through, and I think regardless of what happened at Wimbledon, it would've been tough and I did a good job of getting through it."
Querrey will next face 11th-seeded Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine.
Stephens' tournament is done a year after she won the Citi Open. The 23-year-old American said it was just one of those matches for her and took all the blame for her defeat.
"I just played real bad. Nothing more, nothing less," Stephens said. "Just one of those days I was really bad. Obviously I'm not the first person to have a bad day and I won't be the last."
Earlier in the day, fifth-seeded Eugenie Bouchard was upset by Italy's Camila Giorgi, 7-5, 6-4, marking the fourth time in the Canadian's past 10 tournaments that she lost her opening match. She most recently reached the round of 32 at Wimbledon before losing to Dominika Cibulkova.
Bouchard said she felt kind of out of it from the beginning Tuesday, when temperatures were in the 90s, but she put no blame on the heat and instead credited Giorgi for keeping her off balance.
"She kind of plays not like any other player, really: absolutely no rhythm, not long points at all," Bouchard said. "I found it hard to get my feeling and get into points and stuff."
Bouchard repeated that she was unsure about playing in the Rio Olympics, citing the Zika virus. The Montreal native called herself a "last-minute person" and said she would wake up and decide next week.
Bouchard has seen fellow Canadian Milos Raonic and other high-profile tennis players and golfers pull out and conceded that has made her think.
"I'm truly undecided, and you see more and more people pulling out as kind of the deadline gets closer," Bouchard said. "It's just unfortunate because it would be my first games, and to have a problem like this kind of dampening the excitement of potentially your first Olympic Games, it really sucks, to be honest."
In other women's play, American Christina McHale upset eighth-seeded Monica Niculescu of Romania 6-3, 6-4. The New Jersey native will next face Jessica Pegula, daughter of Buffalo Bills and Sabres owners Terry and Kim Pegula.
McHale continued a strong year that has included pushing world No. 1 Serena Williams to three sets twice.
"I'm putting myself more in matches to have opportunities to win," McHale said. "I want to stop meeting (Williams) so early in tournaments. It's nice to see against the No. 1 player in the world that I can hold my own and have chances."
On the men's side, 12th-seeded Grigor Dimitrov lost 6-4, 6-4 to Great Britain's Daniel Evans.