(CNN) – The adolescent Leylah Fernandez, with no place in the ranking, continued her impressive career in the US Open by beating Elina Svitolina and thereby reaching the Grand Slam semifinals.
The 19-year-old Canadian, who celebrated her birthday on Monday, beat the fifth-ranked Ukrainian 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 to become the youngest semifinalist at the US Open. since Maria Sharapova in 2005.
The victory over Svitolina is another example of Fernandez’s incredible career in this tournament, which has already eliminated the reigning champion, Naomi Osaka, and the 2016 winner, Angelique Kerber.
“Today’s match was undoubtedly one of the most difficult, not only from a tennis point of view, but also mentally and emotionally,” Fernandez told reporters.
“Svitolina is a great player, a great fighter. I’m glad I was able to fight in the first set. In the second set, she raised her level, and I unfortunately made some mistakes at key moments.”
“I’m glad I was able to recover for the third set. Also in the tiebreak. I had a bit of luck at 5-0, but I’ll take whatever luck I can get. I’m glad I was able to reach the finish line. “.
Fernandez became a fan favorite at Flushing Meadows during her run, and fans at Arthur Ashe once again supported her.
The young woman showed remarkable mettle for someone so novice in what was a tense match, winning the last two points – the first of which was a kind of fortuitous hit at the net – in the decisive tie-break.
When he returned to the locker room, Fernandez said the first thing he did was call his father.
“He told me sincerely that I had put him through hell with this game,” he commented with a laugh.
“But he is very happy for me. He is happy that I was able to fight for every point, I deserved this victory. We just have to keep working, enjoy this victory today, and tomorrow we will work again.”
Canada is also making history in US Open men’s tennis
Carlos Alcaraz’s participation in the US Open ended abruptly, as the Spaniard was forced to withdraw from his quarter-final match against Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime due to injury.
Alcaraz stated after the match that it was his right adductor that forced him to retire ahead of what promised to be a thrilling clash between two of tennis’s top emerging talents.
Auger-Aliassime was leading 6-3 3-1 when Alcaraz retired. With this, he becomes the first male player born in the 2000s to reach a Grand Slam semi-final.
At just 21 years old, Auger-Aliassime also becomes the first Canadian male player in history to reach the semifinals of the US Open.