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Flawless Andreescu into Auckland final

Jan 05, 2019
written by: Tennis Canada
written by: Tennis Canada

We’ll never get tired of saying it, so here it is: Bianca Andreescu’s dream week in Auckland keeps on going!

The 18-year-old Canadian, a qualifier this week at the ASB Classic in Auckland, New Zealand, made light work of Hsieh Su-Wei, defeating the No. 3 seed 6-3, 6-3 in the semi-finals with a flawless display of all-court tennis. Dominating from the baseline, behind it, and at the net, Andreescu looked every bit the superstar she’s become following wins over Caroline Wozniacki and Venus Williams earlier in the week.

Andreescu began her match in a precarious position, as Hsieh sliced and diced her way to three break point opportunities in the second game utilizing her unconventional two-handed strokes off both wings.

The Canadian, however, would be unfazed, responding to her opponent’s variety with deft drop shots and defence of her own to save each. Once Hsieh began to hesitate, Andreescu would pounce with power, and suddenly the Mississauga native found herself up a set.

The second set followed a nearly identical script. After trading the first two games, Andreescu was able to find another gear on her return, belting multiple clean return winners to secure the only break she’d ultimately need. The two played several jaw-dropping all-court points throughout the match, and after a several more the Canadian would eventually earn a match point on Hsieh’s serve.

A backhand return into the net, and it was gone. Could the 18-year-old, who has held her nerve so well all week, close out the biggest match of her career? Yes. After just one hour, 21 minutes, Andreescu claimed victory on one last Hsieh groundstroke long.

In what has been the story of the week in both Auckland and in Canada, Andreescu faces defending champ Julia Goerges in the final, who defeated Genie Bouchard in an epic quarter-final. Regardless of the result, Andreescu will climb to a career high of around No. 107 in the WTA rankings.

Compatriot Bouchard will actually join Andreescu on finals day – albeit in doubles, where she, alongside partner Sofia Kenin, face Paige Mary Hourigan and Taylor Townsend for what would be her first WTA-level doubles title.

(Feature photo: David Rowland/AFP/Getty Images)