Last Updated on May 26, 2023
Born on March 20th, 1993, in Florida, Sloane Stephens is an exceptional American tennis player. As a successor to the iconic Serena Williams, she’s made significant strides in the sport, cementing her status as one of the few African American women to have reached the Top 10 in world rankings. She achieved this milestone on July 16th, 2018.
Sloane, now 30, comes from a family deeply rooted in sports. Her father, John Stephens, had an illustrious career as a Pro Bowl player in the National Football League. Her mother, Sybil Smith, was a notable swimmer and made a name for herself during her college years.
Sloane first swung a tennis racket at the age of nine, training under the watchful eyes of her mother and stepfather at the Sierra Sport and Racquet Club, conveniently located near their home. Her tennis journey then led her to Boca Raton, where she honed her skills at the Evert Tennis Academy. By the age of 12, she had advanced to the Nick Saviano High-Performance Tennis Academy.
Through her hard work and talent, Sloane has emerged as a star on the tennis court. Her career highlights include winning seven Singles titles, among them a prestigious Grand Slam, and attaining a career-best Singles ranking of 3. Despite not having any Doubles titles, she has achieved a respectable Doubles ranking, peaking at 94.
Sloane Stephens’s Current Coach
Francisco ‘Francis’ Roig Genís, a retired professional tennis player from Spain and Rafael Nadal’s former coach, has embarked on a new journey with Sloane Stephens, the former world No. 3 and 2017 US Open champion. Stephens is currently ranked No. 35 in the world, and Roig’s aim will be to steer her back into the top 10.
“I’m happy to have Francis Roig join my team as my new coach! Here’s to a successful journey together, let’s get to work,” Stephens announced on Twitter on December 2022.
Roig was instrumental in Rafael Nadal’s incredible career. They began their collaboration at the start of Nadal’s career, resulting in a long and successful partnership that saw Nadal become a record 22-time Grand Slam champion.
Upon the announcement of Roig leaving his team, Nadal expressed deep gratitude for his contribution, “Francis has been an important person in my career and I am very grateful to him for all these years of work and friendship. When we started working together I was a child and together with my uncle Toni, we started on the circuit. Francis is a great coach who knows tennis very well and has helped me a lot to get better and better.”
Roig brings a vast amount of experience and winning strategies to Stephens’ team. He not only knows what it takes to win, but also how to keep evolving in the dynamic world of professional tennis.
Sloane has spent time with quite a couple of coaches and top ex-players during the course of developing into a professional player. Here are the individuals that have contributed to her growth.
Sloane’s first coach was an ex-top 50 tennis player, Francisco Gonzalez, who instructed her at the Sierra Sport and Racquet Club. He was also the one who advised her to pursue a career in tennis before she proceeded to Boca Raton to train.
Francisco was an ex-Paraguay tennis player who retired in 1990 after claiming 10 Doubles and no Singles. He was ranked as high as 34 in the Singles and 22 in the Doubles category.
Sloane took Francisco’s advice at 11 and proceeded to Boca Raton to train. She started training at the Evert Tennis Academy, owned by John Evert and run by his sister, Chris Evert.
Chris Evert was a top ex-tennis player with an incredible record of 89.97% (1309-146) in the Singles (second highest in the history of male and female tennis). She has made the list of the Tennis International Hall of Fame, which is well-deserved considering her 157 Singles titles and 32 Doubles titles.
Saviano can be said to be one of those who greatly contributed to the development of Sloane. She started training under Saviano when she left Evert tennis Academy and began training at the Nick Saviano High-Performance Tennis Academy at the age of 12. She spent four years with Saviano before moving on and later reconciled with him in 2015.
Saviano was a former professional tennis player and popular coach known for his long-term relationship with the former world’s number 5, Eugenie Bouchard. He also recorded a Singles title and three Doubles career titles during his time.
After departing from Saviano for the first time in 2009, Sloane began working with an ex-Bahamas tennis player who turned coach, Roger Smith. Roger, who only recorded three (3) Doubles titles during his career, led Sloane to 3 Doubles Grand Slams titles as a junior player and into the World’s Top 100. Their relationship ended in 2012; David Nainkin
Sloane started working with David in 2012 to help her qualify for the 2012 Olympics; however, she eventually missed out on this. She did not get to qualify for the tournament since only four players were accepted from each country, and she ranked at number 5.
She also worked briefly with Paul Annacone and became the first female player to be coached by the famous American coach. Paul is popular for his time with 20 times Grand Slam Champion Roger Federer and 17 times Grand Slam winner Pete Sampras. He currently coaches Taylor Fritz.
Similar to the case of Annacone, she also spent some time with Thomas after departing from Annacone. Thomas is an ex-Swedish professional player and coach who has worked with many top players such as Tommy Haas, Magnus Norman, Eugenie Bouchard, Caroline Wozniacki, Maria Sharapova, Li Na, Simona Halep, Madison Keys, and Johanna Konta.
Thomas was able to win only a Singles career title before retiring from playing tennis.
After leaving Thomas, Sloane returned to her former coach, Nick Saviano.
Kamau is arguably the most successful coach of Sloane so far since he led her to her highest career ranking and five out of the seven career titles she has won. The American coach has worked with Sloane on two different occasions, although the second relationship was not so fruitful.
He worked alongside Othmane Garma while coaching Sloane and worked briefly with Monica Puig before reconciling with Sloane. Kamau also established a Tennis Programme named XS in Chicago. 22 US Open Doubles Finalist; Taylor Fritz was one of the first five players to benefit from the program.
Sloane Stephens worked with Darian King for two seasons in 2021 and 2022 as a coach and hitting partner.
Darian is a Barbadian tennis player who is currently ranked 402 in the Singles and 282 in the Doubles. Their partnership grew from their friendship and is looking really fruitful.
Darian has not had an exceptional senior career although his run at the ITF has been quite a feat. He has won a total of 38 ITF titles, including 16 Singles and 22 Doubles. Darian has also represented Barbados at the Davis Cup and holds a record of 40-22 at the tournament.
He has also been able to motivate Sloane to a title, won at the 2022 Guadalajara in Mexico.
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Sloane Stephens’s achievements with different coaches
We have collected in the table the data about the trophies won by Sloane Stephens under the guidance of various coaches.
|Coaches||Years of Completion||Titles|
|Francisco Gonzalez||2002 – 2004||–|
|John and Chris Evert||2004- 2005||–|
|Nick Saviano||2005 – 2009;|
|2015 Washington DC Open|
|Roger Smith||2009 – 2012||–|
|David Nainkin||2012 – 2013||–|
|Paul Annacone||2013 – 2014||–|
|Thomas Hogstedt||2014 – 2015||–|
|Kamau Murray||2015 – 2018; |
2019 – 2021
|2018 Miami Open |
2017 US Open
2016 Auckland Open
2016 Acapulco Open
2016 Charleston Open
|Darian King||2021 – 2022||2022 Guadalajara Open|
|Francisco Roig||2022- ongoing||–|