Giant-slaying teen sets 22-year US Open first

2 weeks ago 11
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Canadian teen Leylah Fernandez continued her giant-killing tally astatine the US Open, defeating Ukrainian 5th effect Elina Svitolina to beforehand to her archetypal Grand Slam semi-final.

The fearless teen, who turned 19 yesterday, exhibited the aforesaid resoluteness that saw her her destruct four-time large champion Naomi Osaka successful the 3rd circular and three-time Grand Slam victor Angelique Kerber successful the fourth.

Leylah Fernandez of Canada reacts against Elina Svitolina of Ukraine during her Women's Singles quarterfinals lucifer connected Day Nine of the 2021 US Open astatine the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center connected September 07, 2021 successful the Flushing vicinity of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) (Getty)

The 73rd ranked pistillate subordinate showed she has what it takes to win nether pressure, prevailing successful a nerve-racking 3rd acceptable tiebreak, 7-5 to clinch a spot successful the past four.

Svitolina came into the contention riding a nine-match winning streak and she had not dropped a acceptable en way to the quarter-finals, and is rated arsenic the champion subordinate connected the women's circuit not to person won a Grand Slam tournament.

Using the vigor from a raucous assemblage to her advantage, the assured prima kept Svitolina connected the backfoot successful the opening frame, refusing to springiness her hostile an accidental to break, connected her mode to snaring the archetypal set.

Svitolina accrued her strength successful the 2nd and managed to interruption Fernandez doubly to physique a 5-1 lead.

But the youngster broke backmost and pushed the Ukranian prima to the bounds by astir securing another, earlier the 5th effect closed retired the acceptable with an ace.

The Canadian, however, didn't fto that get to her and raced retired to a 4-2 lead, earlier Svitolina fought backmost from 5-3 down to interruption the Canadian and past held service to get backmost connected level terms.

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With the lucifer connected the enactment successful the tie-breaker, 1 would person been forgiven for reasoning the much experienced subordinate would person travel retired connected top. Yet Fernandez showed maturity beyond her years to enactment the people and unafraid the biggest triumph of her career.

"Throughout the lucifer I was truthful nervous, I was trying to bash what my manager told maine to do. Thanks to you guys, the New York crowd, for ne'er giving up for me. Thanks to you I was capable to triumph today," she said.

Elina Svitolina (L) congratulates Fernandez. (Getty)

Her manager is her father, but helium isn't successful New York, helium stayed location and is offering tips successful regular telephone conversations to the left-hander.

Fernandez became the youngest subordinate to decision 2 WTA Top-5 players astatine the aforesaid Grand Slam since 17-year-old Serena Williams successful 1999.

"Nobody saw this coming," ex-tennis subordinate turned ESPN James Blake said.

"I consciousness similar with Serena Williams and different radical who came done erstwhile they were teenagers, determination were informing shots.

"Everyone knew, determination was hype, a batch of speech going into the slams erstwhile they made their debut.

"For her [Fernandez], she was going slow, it did look similar she was making dependable advancement not this monumental progress."

The 19-year-old has present booked a semi-final clash with either 2nd effect Aryna Sabalenka oregon Czech eighth effect Barbora Krejcikova.

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