Canadian teenage tennis player Bianca Andreescu is warming up for Saturday’s US Open title showdown with 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams, in a rematch of last month’s Toronto final that wasn’t completed as a result of injury.
Bianca Andreescu 19, is playing at just her fourth Grand Slam and making her US Open main draw debut. She has enjoyed a quick rise over the past nine months after finishing 2018 ranked 178th in the universe.
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Bianca Andreescu has amounted the second Canadian woman after Eugenie Bouchard at Wimbledon in 2014 to reach a Grand Slam final following Thursday’s 7-6 (7/3), 7-5 victory over Swiss 13th seed Belinda Bencic.
The Canadian teenager will on Saturday battle with a record-chasing Serena Williams, who won her first major title at the 1999 US Open before Bianca Andreescu was even born.
Serena Williams and Bianca Andreescu recently met at the Rogers Cup in Toronto, but it was a brief out play, with Williams retiring while trailing 3-1 in the final as a result of a back injury.
“I’ve wanted to play her. I remember always telling my team I would have always wanted to play her right before she retires. I’m really looking forward to it. She’s an amazing champion on and off the court. It’s going to be fun,” Andreescu revealed.
“A lot of emotions are running through my body right now. A lot of thoughts, too. But right now I’m just trying to take in the victory of tonight. Hopefully I can just keep the momentum going for the finals. Hopefully I can play a little bit better than I did today.” She added.
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Bianca Andreescu is the number two teenage Grand Slam finalist this year, after French Open runner-up Marketa Vondrousova and will bid to become the first teen Grand Slam champion since Maria Sharapova won at Flushing Meadows in 2006.
“If someone told me a year ago I would be in the US Open final this year, I’d tell them they were crazy. I don’t think I would have believed them. I was ranked, like, outside of the 150, I think. It’s just crazy what a year can do. If someone would have said that a couple weeks ago, I think I would have believed them.” Bianca Andreescu told newsmen.
Bianca Andreescu saved a set point in the opening set against fellow first-time Grand Slam semi-finalist Bencic before leading the tie-break. She then trailed by a double break at 5-2 in the 2nd set but reeled off the final five matches to close out the game.
“I think when I’m down, I play my best tennis. Whenever my back is against the wall, I think I’m just extra focused in those moments. I remember I told myself at 5-2 that I didn’t want to go in three sets. So I think just that switched my mindset. I was just really, really focused.” Andreescu said.
The teenager owned two Grand Slam major draw victories coming into this Flushing Meadows fortnight, and had also fallen in the first round of US Open qualifying the past two years.
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“I wasn’t going through a good period in my life at that point. I was having problems with some relationships in my life, with my body, and even my mind, too. I was playing 25Ks, I remember, 60Ks in Canada before the quallies of the US Open. But I’m glad I went through it because at one point you have to. I think I just learned a lot,” she said.