Two teenage Asian tennis players have now advanced to the US Open semi-finals.
Leylah Fernandez, 19, and Emma Radacanu, 18, have played their way into the US Open semi-finals. They will not face each other in those matches. Both players are receiving plaudits on social media.
Fernandez earned her spot on Tuesday defeating no. 5 seed Elina Svitolina in a three-set thriller that was decided by a tie-break.
After the match, she explained her father, who is also her coach, told her to fight for her dream.
“My dad told me so many things but today he told me to go out there and have fun,” Fernandez 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.”
Radacanu advanced to the semi-final on Wednesday, defeating no. 11 seed Belinda Bencic in straight sets.
“It was literally one point at a time, trying to focus on what I can control, my serve, landing first serve,” Radacanu said after the match. “Belinda’s an incredibly tough opponent, but I’m just really pleased to come through that.”
The British teen had to play extra matches to qualify. At her first US Open appearance, she becomes the first qualifier, man or woman, to advance to the semi-finals.
In her post-match interview, the media asked Radacanu about Fernandez and the success of young players.
“To have so many young players here, doing so well, it just shows how strong the next generation is,” Radacanu said. “Leylah is doing incredibly well, she’s really nice, she was handing out cupcakes for her 19th birthday …”
Fernandez will play no. 2 seed Aryna Sabalenka in the semi finals. Radacanu will face the winner of Wednesday night’s match between no. 4 seed Karolina Pliskova and no. 17 seed Maria Sakkari.
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