Serena Williams labeled sore loser by former mentee
It seems that Serena Williams may be a bit of a sore loser, especially after losing to Sloane Stephens in the Australian Open in January. After losing the match Williams made little effort, if any at all, to stay in touch with Stephens despite their supposed extremely close mentor-pupil relationship.
Stephens has become more outspoken to the media as of late and has decided to fight fire with fire by throwing a few barbs back at Williams through the media. Stephens details the fragility of her relationship with Serena in the May 13 edition ESPN The Magazine, and it seems like things have fallen completely apart.
“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. “And that should tell everyone something, how she went from saying all these nice things about me to unfollowing me on Twitter.”
Stephens took it up another level as she demanded for an explanation from Williams.
“Like, seriously! People should know,” Stephens said. “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?”
Williams had long been considered to be Stephens’ favorite player on tour along with being a great friend and mentor. That such a close relationship can deteriorate so quickly because of a pupil topping a teacher is not a good reflection on Serena’s character. Stephens seems hurt and confused, but she said she is determined to move forward.
“For the first 16 years of my life, she said one word to me and was never involved in my tennis whatsoever,” said Stephens. “I really don’t think it’s that big of a deal that she’s not involved now. If you mentor someone, that means you speak to them, that means you help them, that means you know about their life, that means you care about them. Are any of those things true at this moment? No.”
Whatever happens, hopefully the two women can find some common ground to stand upon. If not, Stephens doesn’t seem ready to let it affect her on the court. If nothing else, it makes for a good storyline for the upcoming French Open, which begins in just over two weeks.