HomeSportsLeylah Fernandez Advances to US Open Semi-Finals

Leylah Fernandez Advances to US Open Semi-Finals

Leylah Fernandez advances to the US Open semi-finals, defeating Elina Svitolina in a three-set thriller.

The 19-year-old Fernandez celebrated her birthday Monday. On Tuesday, she beat no. 5 seed Svitolina, 26, in a hard-fought match.

Fernandez won the first set 6-3, but Svitolina battled back and won the second set. She took control of the third set, but again Svitolina battled back to send it to a tie break. Fernandez won the tie-break seven points to five.

The 19-year-old fell to the ground in tears as she won the point that sent her into the semi-finals.

“I honestly have no idea what I’m feeling right now,” Fernandez said after the match.

“Throughout the whole match, I was so nervous…Thanks to you guys, to the crowd, to the New York crowd, cheering me on, fighting for me, never giving up for me. Thanks to you I was able to push through today.”

In her post-match interview, Fernandez honored her opponent, Svitolina.

“Svitolina is a great player, she fought for everything, I’m honored to have a fight with her,” she said.

She also paid tribute to her father who couldn’t attend the match. Her father, who is also her coach, has been cheering her on from home while he looks after her younger sister.

“My dad told me so many things but today he told to go out there and have fun,” she said. “Fight for every ball. Fight for every point. Today’s your first quarter-final; don’t make it you’re last. Don’t make it your last match over here. Fight for your dream.”

Fernandez is one of four Canadians who have had a very successful run at the US Open. When asked what they were feeding the tennis players up in Canada, she replied:

“I would say it’s the maple syrup.”

Fernandez will play the winner of tonight’s second quarter-final between Barbora Krejcikova or Aryna Sabalenka.

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