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Serena Williams overcomes serving wobbles to set up Sloane Stephens showdown

 Serena Williams’ drive for her 24th major singles title continued with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Margarita Gasparyan to advance to the third round of the US Open.
Williams improved her career record to 20-0 in the second round at Flushing Meadows and will play fellow American Sloane Stephens in the next round. Williams leads the series 5-1. Stephens, who won the title in 2017, sealed her progress with a dominant 6-2, 6-2 win over Olga Govortsova earlier on Thursday.

Wearing crowns on her sneakers, Williams had 27 winners and seven aces to put away Gasparya, although she also double faulted five times.

Williams has won 23 grand slam singles titles, the most in the professional era and one shy of Margaret Court’s mark of 24. She has won the US Open six times and finished runner-up each of the last two years. Her opening win was her 102nd at the tournament, breaking a tie with Chris Evert for most in the professional era, which started in 1968.

She improved to 5-2 since tennis resumed from the pandemic break.


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