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Already with her best Australian Open showing since 2014, World No. 5 Sloane Stephens looks to continue the positive momentum when she takes on 25-year-old Hungarian Timea Babos in the second round.
For those in the United States looking to watch, the match is scheduled to start Tuesday at about 7 p.m. ET. It’s on before the regular ESPN2 TV broadcast starts for the night, but you can watch the entire match live on your computer, phone or streaming device via ESPN+, the new digital streaming service from ESPN (no cable subscription necessary) that will have coverage of all non-televised 2019 Australian Open matches.
You can sign up for a free seven-day trial of ESPN+ right here, and you can then watch a live stream of Stephens vs Babos on your computer via ESPN.com, or on your phone (Android and iPhone compatible), tablet, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, PlayStation 4, Xbox One or other compatible streaming device via the ESPN app.
Stephens vs Babos Preview
With a non-nonsense, straight-set victory (6-4, 6-2) over fellow American Taylor Townsend in the first round, Stephens captured her first Australian Open win in five years. Following a breakout semifinal appearance in 2013 and a fourth-round exit in 2014, she was ousted in the first round in 2015 and 2016, didn’t play in 2017, and once again fell in the opening round as the No. 13 seed last year.
“It’s been a tough couple of years here, but I do love this tournament. It’s always tough the first slam of the year kind of getting going,” Stephens said after the win. “I had a good result here once before, so I think I’m going to try to do it again. Obviously it’s a work in progress, but just happy to get through that first match, especially against someone from home.”
Still, despite a couple of rough warm-up performances in Brisbane (Round-of-32 loss to Johanna Konta) and Sydney (Round-of-16 loss to Yulia Putintseva) over the last couple of weeks, Stephens should be considered a legitimate threat to make a deep run here.
Her second-round opponent, Babos is ranked 65th in the world and has never advanced past the second round at the Australian Open.
These two have only played each other once in the professional careers, and that was on clay back in 2012 (Stephens won in three sets), but there is plenty of familiarity, as they proved to be a formidable junior doubles team.
“We used to play a lot, we won three doubles slams together,” Stephens said. “I think it will be another good match. Obviously second round of a slam, tough match again. Just going to go out and compete and have a good game plan and try to execute the best I can.”
Babos is much more accomplished in doubles, where she ranks No. 3 in the world and won the 2018 Australian Open with Kristina Mladenovic, but she can still be dangerous in singles. She took down then No. 10 seed Coco Vandeweghe in the first round of last year’s Australian Open, so Stephens will need to be careful.
The winner of this one will take on either Marketa Vondrousova or No. 31 seed Petra Martic in the third round.
Source: Heavy Streaming (How to Watch Sloane Stephens vs Timea Babos Online in USA [Australian Open 2019])