Sloane Stephens said she received “more than 2,000 messages of abuse and anger” and withdrew from the French Open after receiving hundreds of lewd messages about her and her loss to Serena Williams in last year’s US Open final.
During an on-court interview, the top-seeded Stephens revealed that “it got a little crazy.”
“I was getting hundreds of messages just from the French Open and people saying inappropriate things,” Stephens said. “It got to a point where I just couldn’t take it anymore.”
Stephens said she didn’t take them from only fans who were happy for her, saying that “a few of them were saying really horrible things.”
She said that she “didn’t feel like doing the media stuff” at the French Open, but that after the tournament she faced “a lot of bad advice.”
Stephens missed the Australian Open, Indian Wells and Miami tournaments with illness earlier this year. She plans to make her return to the court in Aviva Open in Birmingham, England, on June 22.
“I definitely feel I’m ready,” she said. “To have had time off makes a big difference.”