The Latest: Stephens withdraws from US Open with foot injury
NEW YORK (AP) The Latest on the U.S. Open, which starts Monday (all times local):
American Sloane Stephens has withdrawn from the U.S. Open because of a right foot injury.
The announcement Friday means that Olympic gold medalist Monica Puig becomes the 32nd and final seed, as Stephens had been seeded 24th. Had Puig remained unseeded, she could have met one of the top players in the first or second round.
The 23-year-old Stephens was a 2013 quarterfinalist at Flushing Meadows and reached the semifinals at the Australian Open that year. While she had more success earlier in her career in the Grand Slams than in other tour events, that pattern had reversed in the last couple of years.
Stephens hadn't played since losing in the first round at the Olympics.
When the U.S. Open draw sets the first-round matchups, a top player could find himself with a daunting task.
Olympic silver medalist Juan Martin del Potro is unseeded at the year's final major, which starts Monday. Del Potro is ranked No. 142 because three left wrist surgeries forced him to miss so much time. The 2009 U.S. Open champ needed a wild card to get into the tournament.
So Friday's draw could put him in position to face a seeded player in the first or second round. That's what happened to top-ranked Novak Djokovic at the Olympics, when he lost to del Potro in his opening match. It's possible they could meet again early at Flushing Meadows.
Del Potro has defeated three of the U.S. Open's top four seeds since the start of Wimbledon.