It’s another milestone for Bianca Andreescu.
The 19-year-old Canadian defeated former World No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki on a sunny afternoon at Arthur Ashe Stadium by a score of 6-4, 6-4, sending Andreescu into the fourth round and coveted “second week” of a Grand Slam for the first time.
Andreescu kicked off the match in fine fashion, striking laser-like forehands to push Wozniacki well behind the baseline to reward herself with a break of serve in the first game. However, the Dane was able to reel Andreescu back in with her signature defensive style, breaking back immediately and nudging ahead with a quick hold.
The first set was played evenly until the all-important seventh game of the set, which saw the Canadian No. 1 cut back on her unforced errors and return to controlling play with her thunderous groundstrokes off both wings. There, Andreescu secured her second break of the set to give her the score advantage she needed to close out the set after 42 minutes of play.
Racing out to a 3-0 lead following a Wozniacki medical timeout at the end of the first set, the No. 15 seed had victory within sight. However, the Dane would find the level of tennis that brought her to the summit of the WTA rankings, counterpunching with tenacity to claim three games in a row and level the score.
Andreescu wouldn’t let Wozniacki ahead though, exchanging another round of breaks before finally earning a chance to serve out the match. Pressured in a high-octane rally in the first point of what would ultimately be the decisive game, the Canadian struck a stunning angled forehand winner to earn the 15-0 advantage. Despite dropping serve three times in the set, that point appeared to relax Andreescu on her service delivery, quickly winning the next three points, a hold to love and, with it, the match.
Through to the second week of a Grand Slam for the first time! 😱
— Tennis Canada (@TennisCanada) August 31, 2019
Andreescu’s return of serve was key to the match, which was won by the exact same score as her previous encounter with Wozniacki in Auckland, New Zealand at the start of season. The World No. 15 generated 17 break points on the 2018 Australian Open champion’s serve, breaking four times and winning an impressive 53% of return points.
Up next for the Canadian is Taylor Townsend, an American qualifier who pulled off the upset of the tournament when she knocked off reigning Wimbledon champion Simona Halep in the second round. The American’s serve-and-volley style has thrown off opponents all week, including Halep, against whom she came to the net over 100 times.
But if there’s anything Andreescu has proven in 2019, is that she can adapt to any type of player. The proof? Six top 10 wins, a 41-4 win-loss record and two of the WTA’s biggest titles – Indian Wells and Toronto – in her trophy cabinet.
Is the US Open trophy next?
(Feature photo: Mauricio Paiz)