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Sloane Stephens married the former Sunderland star and had an extraordinary goal in his pre-tennis career | tennis | sports

Australian Open 2023 - Day 3

Sloane Stephens is one of the top tennis talents in America (Image: GETTY)

Sloane Stephens is a highly successful American tennis player, following in the footsteps of her legendary predecessors Venus and Serena Williams. The 29-year-old made history by becoming the fourth African-American woman to win a Grand Slam singles title, after Althea Gibson and the Williams sisters.

Born in Plantation, Florida, Stephens is of Trinidadian descent. Her athletic prowess is not surprising considering that her parents were both successful athletes. Her late father, John, played football in the NFL and represented the New England Patriots, while her mother, Sybil Smith, is considered the greatest swimmer in Boston University history.

She started playing tennis at the age of nine, which is late by professional standards, but her talent was such that she was immediately advised to move from California and join a large coaching institute.

Stephens moved to Florida in 2004 and eventually trained at the Evert Tennis Academy and the Nick Saviano Academy of High Performance Tennis.

After turning professional a few years later, many were tipping Stevens to be the next American superstar after Serena Williams.

US Open Day 10

Many were tipping Stephens, who is pictured as a 17-year-old, to be the next American star after Serena Williams. (Image: GETTY)

And those who predicted this feat were right as, at the peak of her career, Stephens became the world No. 3. This ranking was boosted after she won the 2017 US Open in dramatic fashion, as well as reaching the final of the 2018 French Open.

On a night when two women of African descent not named Williams met in a Grand Slam final for the first time, Stephens put in a clinic by easily dealing with Madison Keys, 6-3, 6-0, in a match that lasted just 61 minutes.

“I was just thinking, ‘Oh my God,'” said Stephens, who then walked across the stands to embrace her coach and her mother. She added, “Winning a tournament is very special, but winning the US Open, being an American player, is just incredible.”

Stephens was asked if the victory would give her greater desire to win another Grand Slam title. “Did you see the check that lady handed me?” “If that doesn’t make you want to play tennis, I don’t know what will,” Stevens asked, before admitting.

US Open Tennis Championships 2017

Stephens became the lowest-ranked player to win the US Open in 2017 (Image: GETTY)

The quest to continue playing tennis has landed the 29-year-old an astounding prize money of £12.4 million ($15 million) in her career. Her first Grand Slam win also earned her a career-best £3 million ($3.7 million) prize.

In 2019, Stephens was the fifth-highest-paid female athlete in the world, earning £8 million ($9.6 million), of which £4.5 million ($5.5 million) was paid.

During that year, though, she dropped out of the top 20 because she failed to reach the finals of any event on the WTA circuit. Stephens’ struggles continued in 2020, as she lost in the first round in most of her preliminary tournaments, including the Australian Open.

After making a comeback – after the pandemic-enforced lockdown – Stephens showed a gradual improvement in her form and stretched Serena Williams to three sets at the US Open before losing in the third round.

WTA Guadalajara Open Akron 2022 - Day 3

In 2019, she became the fifth highest paid female athlete in the world (Image: GETTY)

One thing that might surprise some about Stephens is that she didn’t dream of becoming a tennis champion — instead, she wanted to be a taxidermist.

I grew up surrounded by corpses. Her extended family owns a funeral home, so she spent her formative years fridges full of corpses, dressing corpses for funerals and leading family hearses.

Interestingly, she revealed how she was once prevented from saying hello to mourners because she once cried in front of a group of them. She gleefully lists cremation and embalming as one of her past interests.

In an interview with The Guardian, she revealed: “A lot of people are afraid of dead bodies but you can’t be afraid, they’re like the only thing you shouldn’t be afraid of because they can’t do anything to you. You should be afraid of people walking around because you don’t You know what’s going to happen, right?

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The 29-year-old is married to former USMNT forward Jozy Altidore (Image: GETTY)

Away from the field, Sloane enjoys the married life of professional soccer player and MLS legend Josie Altidore. Interestingly, she first met Altidore in fifth grade. The couple began dating in 2016 and got engaged in April 2019, before getting married in January 2022.

Altidore currently plays for Puebla in Mexico and is on loan from MLS side New England Revolution. The 33-year-old has played for clubs in Spain, England, the Netherlands and Turkey during his career, most notably with Sunderland in the Premier League. On the international stage, he played 115 games for the USMNT during an impressive 12-year career, scoring 42 goals.

Sloan and Josie are one of the leading sports couples in the United States. As of January 2022, the estimated Net worth of Altidore is ($8 Million) with an annual salary ($2.2 Million).

Celebrity Net Worth also reported that Sloane has an estimated net worth ($20 million), thanks to her successful tennis career, as well as multiple brand endorsement deals with companies like Nike, Rolex, Mercedes Benz, and Under Armour.


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