Published: Fri, September 06, 2019
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Into US Open semis, Andreescu tries to become Canada's champ

Into US Open semis, Andreescu tries to become Canada's champ

To say the Canadian has had a breakthrough year would be an understatement.

Her U.S. Open hopes previous year crashed before they could take flight when she suffered a back injury and lost in the first round of the qualifying tournament. "So I'm just really proud of myself with how I dealt injury-wise while I was injured". She built on the run in New Zealand and qualify for the Australian Open, where she lost in the second round.

"I think anyone would be shocked to be in the semifinals of a Grand Slam because all of us dream of this moment ever since we're kids, ever since we picked up a racket", said Andreescu, whose match against Bencic will follow the semifinal between No. 8 Williams and No. 5 Elina Svitolina.

Serena has done this in four of their five head-to-head meetings, but I can't give much credence to the head to head matches, given they've not played for three years and Svitolina was ranked 20 or higher in every single one of their matches - the match-up, with Svitolina a top 10 regular now and Williams, despite still being the best hard courter on tour, perhaps not quite at the peak of her powers.

"The work and staying in the moment is more important right now". She broke Bertens twice in the second to force a third, then improved her first-serve percentage to 73% in the decider. But still, she'd never been in major quarterfinal before.

The result puts another notch on Andreescu's remarkable streak of 22 straight wins in completed matches, a run that dates to late February.

"So I just try my best to figure out what's going well and what's not and just go from there". She's trying to become the first Canadian singles Grand Slam champion.

On Thursday evening, Andreescu will face another first-time major semifinalist in 13th seed Belinda Bencic of Switzerland, who advanced over No. 23 seed Donna Vekic from Croatia, 7-6 (5), 6-3, Wednesday afternoon.

She joins Venus Williams, Chris Evert and Pam Shriver as only the fourth woman to make it to a U.S. Open semifinal in their first appearance. Based on her strong performance in Queens, which includes wins over Wozniacki and Taylor Townsend, it seems as if maybe she has forgotten what it's like to lose, and doesn't want to remember.

"She has made a mark". "She's an incredible player".

The victory over Mertens didn't come easy on a muggy night in Queens, but Andreescu, as she's done all year long, didn't show any quit in coming back for the victory.

Clijsters was indeed one of the idols who inspired Andreescu's style of play.

"This is honestly so insane", the 19-year-old told the crowd in her on-court interview immediately afterwards. "I think that's motivation enough to keep going". But has lived and first learned tennis in the European country. "She executed some good tactics in the first set". They started working together in 2018, when she was still toiling on the ITF circuit, and even he didn't expect her to make it to the top so soon. She beat Katie Volynets, a teenaged American wild-card entry in the first round, before defeating Kirsten Flipkens, a veteran Belgian doubles specialist, in the second round.

"I don't think I've played my best tennis", she said.

This spirit has played a huge role in her ascent.

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