Demanded to the maximum, Leylah Fernández advanced to the quarterfinals


In a match that surprised by the level shown in the second round by two members of the Next Gen, Leylah Fernández stopped the power of the Chinese Zheng Qinwen to qualify for the quarterfinals of the Abierto GNP Seguros. The defending champion prevailed in three sets by partials of 6-1, 4-6, 7(7)-6(3) in two hours and 42 minutes of play at the cost of breaking her streak of 13 sets without losing in Monterrey.

Both 19-year-old tennis players had never faced each other in the WTA, however, they know each other from the youth circuits and Qinwen closely follows Leylah’s performance, is aware of the route that the young women of her generation trace towards the highest ranking positions.

“It was a very difficult match. I’ve known Qinwen since Juniors, she’s a very good player and she’s climbing the ranks fast. I am happy to be able to fight, to be able to fight, to overcome that difficulty and to play such a match against her for the first time on the WTA. It’s good for the next generation and it’s good for the sport,” Fernández said at a press conference after the game.

Varying the directions and angles in the strokes of her ball, Fernández stopped Qinwen’s power attack in the first set, “she is a player who has good shots, knows how to vary a bit and tries to be offensive”, as Fernández described her. .

The service represented a problem for the Chinese in the first part of the duel, she committed four double faults in her first turn to serve, that, added to her lack of adaptation, cost her a 6-1 loss in the set.

However, from the second the conditions were equalized. Ranked No. 77, she managed to adjust to take it 6-4 and break Leylah’s 13-set unbeaten streak. The key for the Chinese was consistency, one of the elements she has focused on in recent months.

Qinwen took the lead multiple times in the game and led the tournament’s second seed to settle the match in the final instance, in the third set tie break. When Leylah was able to finish the match he let out a loud cry of victory.

“I started making some mistakes that didn’t help me, something I didn’t do in the first set, but other than that I’m very happy with the level I played at, the level of mental toughness I showed and I’m happy that we put on a good show. in front of everyone. That shows how good the Next Generation of the WTA is, how strong it is and that it wants to do something special in tennis”, said the Canadian.

After a long game, the tennis player must prioritize her recovery. He will face on Friday the winner of the duel between the Egyptian Mayar Sherif and the Chinese Wang Qiang.

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