Photo: WTA

The pause in the tennis season has not slowed down Leylah Annie Fernandez.

After qualifying for the main draw at the Top Seed Open presented by Bluegrass Orthopaedics yesterday, Fernandez caused the upset in a dominant first round performance over the seventh seed, Sloane Stephens. The young Canadian needed only a little over an hour to overcome her opponent in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3.

Despite her young age, Fernandez showcased some heavy hitting throughout the match. She was dominant from start to finish, overpowering a more experienced Stephens. At just 17 years old, the Canadian holds a winning record against Stephens, a former Top 3 player and Grand Slam champion.

“I think the first ‘come on’ that I said, it was even surprising to me because all the emotions just came back to me. The drive of winning again, and keep going and fighting for every point, it was still there. That’s what all competition is about, you know, the drive of getting the win and the thrill of competition, even the pressure – that’s what we want,” said Fernandez.

In the second round, Fernandez will face American Shelby Rogers, with the winner facing either Serena or Venus Williams in the quarter-finals.

(Feature photo: WTA)