Watson maintains fine form

  • Last Updated: July 10 2012, 8:00 BST

Rising star Heather Watson continued her impressive form with a three-set victory over Sloane Stephens at the Bank of the West Classic.

Heather Watson: Toppled Sloane Stephens in three sets

Watson climbed to a career-high ranking of 79 after her run to the third round at the All England Club.

And the 20-year-old is now through to the second round in Stanford after a 7-6 (7-5) 4-6 6-1 win against Stephens.

Watson was broken three times in the first set and fell behind in the tie-break before winning the last four points in a row to claim the set.

It got worse in the second set as her 19-year-old opponent, ranked 30 places above her, broke twice to take it, but Watson stormed through the third for victory.

Watson, who could become British number one next week, will face Belgian fifth seed Yanina Wickmayer - a 7-5 2-6 7-5 win over Chang Kai-Chen - in the next round.

Sixth seed Chanelle Scheepers recorded a 6-4 6-4 victory over Grace Min, while Michelle Larcher de Brito toppled Jarmila Gajdosova 5-7 6-2 6-3.