Sloane Stephens Defeats Serena Williams in Australian Open Quarterfinal

Sloane Stephens of the USA plays a shot in her 2nd round match against Sofia Arvidsson of Sweden during the Brisbane International tennis tournament held in Brisbane, Australia, Wednesday, Jan 2, 2013. (AP Photo/Tertius Pickard).

By// Mariah Craddick

In a surprising upset, 19-year-old tennis player Sloane Stephens defeated tennis superstar Serena Williams to reach the Australian Open semi-finals, according to ESPN. The loss ended Williams’ run of 20 consecutive wins since Aug. 17.

“It’s pretty cool,” Stephens said in an interview after her win. “To be in the semis of a Grand Slam is definitely I say a good accomplishment. A lot of hard work.”

Williams, a 15-time Grand Slam titleholder, sustained a back injury towards the end of the second set, which could have contributed to her loss. At one point, Williams even smashed her racket on the court – a fine that ended up costing her $1,500.

“I’m almost relieved that it’s over because there’s only so much I felt I could do,” Williams said post-game. “It’s been a little difficult. I’ve been thrown a lot of (curve) balls these two weeks.”

Stephens will now face defending champion Victoria Azarenka in the semi-finals.