On the heels of impressive performances by Canada’s next generation Bianca Andreescu, Felix Auger-Aliassime, and Denis Shapovalov in recent weeks, 14-year-old Leylah Annie Fernandez of Laval, Quebec is turning heads in Mississippi.
After winning three qualifying matches to earn a spot in the main draw of the $25,000 Jackson Challenger, Fernandez defeated world no. 471 Dia Evtimova of Bulgaria 7-6(3), 7-5 in the first round on Wednesday. This is Fernandez’s second pro event and she becomes the first player born in 2002 to win a main draw match at a $25,000 Challenger.
25K Jackson R1: (Q)Leylah Fernandez 🇨🇦 d. Dia Evtimova 🇧🇬 76(3) 75
Fernandez (born 9/6/2002) keeps moving on, first 2002 win in a 25K 😲
— Graham (@juki_tennis) April 5, 2017
In the second round, Fernandez will face tour veteran Alla Kudryavtseva of Russia.
For her part, 18-year-old Katherine Sebov, who was named to Canada’s Fed Cup team today, won her 23rd match of the season 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 over American Sanaz Marand to reach round two in Jackson. She will next face American wildcard Maria Mateas.