Cracking the Top 20 at just age 19, and coming off her second premiere title at the Canadian Open, Bianca Andreescu is proving that she is here to stay. With her victory and classy display of sportsmanship towards a tearfully despondent Serena Willliams in the Toronto final, the teenage sensation proved poise beyond her 19 years.
A truly sophisticated gesture, the young Canadian (descended from Romanian parents) has been blazing like a storm all year.
At just 19 years old, @Bandreescu_ shows a level of maturity well beyond her years. This is how women should treat each other. Her empathy and support for Serena were admirable. Competitors and women supporting women! #RC19 https://t.co/b9v7TG1NjB — Billie Jean King (@BillieJeanKing) August 12, 2019
She established her presence on the stage of tennis when she made her first final appearance in only her second WTA tournament, the Auckland Open at the beginning of the year, when she was just 18 (and a qualifier). She followed up this impressive feat with an even more remarkable breakthrough win at Indian Wells, just a few months later.
The second WTA premiere title over Williams, 3-1 (retired), has propelled the power-hitting, variety player into the Top 15 for the first time, rising up to No. 14, just a few short weeks before the U.S. Open. Oh, and she’s 7-0 against Top 10 players this year.
From a wild card to the Indian Wells champion – Bianca Andreescu just made history. Congratulations, @Bandreescu_! #BiancaRising 🎾🇨🇦 https://t.co/0IBTOfcZQH — Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) March 18, 2019 Andreescu is obviously a huge talent in the WTA, one that no one had on the radar at the beginning of the year.
With multiple titles, she’s proven that she is no one-hit wonder and has the tenacity to remain a contender at any tournament. However, if there’s a criticism of the tennis powerhouse, it’s her consistency.
For her surge in tournaments, she usually follows up the very next one with injury concerns and cancellations, including four months of injury layoff just this year. Her withdrawal from the Cincinnati Masters that came on the heels of the Roger’s Cup title is no exception. "At this point, after all I've been through with injuries, I want to listen to my body," Andreescu said.
"And my body told me to just take it easy right now and get ready for the U.S. Open." Perhaps this is the feeling that the Canadian teenager could relate to when she saw Serena Williams’ obvious pain after the fourth game, due to back spasms.
The gesture went a long way in smoothing over the disappointment over the outcome, with a women’s final cut short. "I'm a pretty outgoing person and I felt like I knew what to say at that moment because I knew exactly how she felt because of what I've been through the last couple of months with my shoulder and even last year with my back," Andreescu said in a phone interview with The Canadian Press.
For all her injury disappointments, the 19-year-old often bounces back after taking sabbaticals between tournaments, and her recuperation may be the key to pushing through the rounds at the U.S. Open. Bianca Andreescu—nicknamed ‘Bibi’—has yet to prove herself in the grand slams, having only made the second round in Australia and the French Open (withdrawing from that match), and skipping Wimbledon.
However, we need to remind ourselves that this is her first official year competing in WTA tournaments, and she’s already clocked in two big titles. Flushing Meadows may lay the foundation for her best result. Hard courts suit her game best, and the new world No.
14 will be entering Queens a much more seasoned player than at the beginning of the year in Melbourne. The two hard court WTA premiere victories should boost her confidence in New York. "No. I'm not saying she's beating everybody,” said her coach, Sylvain Bruneau, to Tennis.com.
“But I think she has her chance against everybody." Don’t be surprised if she makes the final in Queens. Bianca Andreescu may not be considered the front runner for the last slam of the year, but she certainly can’t be counted out, and should be on everyone’s list as a major contender. Besides, Andreescu is used to defying the odds by now.