Bianca Andresscu Exceeding Expectations In Comeback - UBITENNIS
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Bianca Andresscu Exceeding Expectations In Comeback

The world No.57 says she has been pleasantly surprised by the progress she is making.

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BIANCA ANDREESCU OF CANADA - PHOTO: ALBERTO NEVADO / MMO

Former US Open champion Bianca Andreesu says she is on the right path back to the top of her game after booking a place in the second round of the San Diego Open. 

 

The Canadian didn’t begin her 2022 season until April after taking time away from the sport to focus on her mental health. Since peaking at a ranking high of No.4 back in 2019, Andreescu has also been hampered with a variety of injury issues related to her shoulder, back, knee, abdomen and more. 

Despite those setbacks, the 22-year-old has been making steady progress in recent months with a run to the final of the Bad Homburg Open back in June. More recently she reached the third round of both the Canadian Open and US Open. Bringing her current win-loss record for the year to 17-10. 

“I think I’m doing better than I expected,” Andreescu told WTA Insider. “I try not to have any expectations going into this season but it’s definitely better than I thought. Taking so much time off, you never know what you’re going to do.”
“For me, this is the bigger picture kind of thinking that I’m doing with my coach. So it’s not short term, it’s more long term. It’s way less pressure.”

After opting to skip tournaments in Europe to focus on training, Andreescu has returned to action this week in the San Diego Open where she managed to enter the main draw with the help of her protected ranking. In her opening match, she outlasted world No.23 Liudmila Samsonova 7-6(1), 4-6, 6-2, after more than two-and-a-half hours of play. 

“The match was very tight and it could have gone either way,” Andreescu said. “I felt towards the end I felt I was putting a little bit more pressure that she was and I was a little bit more consistent.”

In her latest match, Andreescu converted five out of her 15 break point opportunities and won 67% of her first service points. She could play sixth seed Coco Gauff in the next round should the American defeat Robin Montgomery in her opening match.

Elsewhere at the tournament, Danielle Collins upset French seventh seed Caroline Garcia 6-2, 7-6(4). This week is the first time the Australian Open finalist has played a tournament since the US Open. She will play Italy’s Martina Trevisan in the next round. 

Louisa Chirico will be the first player No.2 seed Paula Badosa plays. The qualifier knocked out Alison Riske-Amritraj 1-6, 7-5, 7-6(5), who is ranked more than 150 places higher than her. 

As for top seed Iga Swiatek, she has a bye in the first round and will play her opening match later this week. The Pole faces either Garbine Muguruza or Elena Rybakina who are both Grand Slam champions. 

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Injured Bianca Andreescu retires From Semi-Final match In Hua Hin

The Canadian was looking to book a spot in her first WTA final of the year but was forced to retire after injuring her right shoulder.

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BIANCA ANDREESCU OF CANADA - PHOTO: ALBERTO NEVADO / MMO

Lesia Tsurenko booked her spot in the final of the Thailand Open in Hua Hin after Bianca Andreescu was forced to retire whilst down 7-6, 4-0.

 

The first set was extremely tight with the first four games being breaks of serve. Andreescu got the crucial break to lead 5-3 and served for the first set but the Ukrainian fought back to level the set at 5-5. Then Tsurenko was the one to break serve but she was able to close out the first set.

After the opener, the semi-final clash went completely one-sided with Tsurenko taking over by winning four games off the trot before Andreescu decided to call it quits. The Canadian had a medical timeout during a second set changeover.

Tsurenko gave full credit to her opponent and despite the retirement says it was a very difficult match.

“Bianca is such an amazing player she said. She is capable of hitting all kinds of shots and gave so much trouble today”. She said.

Tsurenko is looking to win her fifth WTA title and will be playing in her first final since 2019 in Hua Hin. She faces the China’s Lin Zhu who earlier in the day beat the number seven seed Xinyu Wang 6-2, 6-4, in one hour and 38 minutes to book her spot in the final.

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The US team secure their spot in the Davis Cup Group Stage with a 4-0 win over Uzbekistan

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Rajeev Ram and Austin Krajicek beat Uzbekistan’s Sayniar Fayziev and Sergey Fomin 6-2 6-4 after just 52 minutes in the doubles match of the best-of five qualifier to secure the US team a spot in the 2023 Davis Cup Group Stage. 

 

Ram and Krajicek broke twice in the third and seventh games to win the first set 6-2. The US team earned an immediate break in the first game and held their service games to win the second set 6-4. Ram praised the Uzbek team after the match. 

“Rankings-wise the Uzbek opponents are the underdogs. They are not the favourites in this match, but even in the singles they tried their best and they really fought until the end and that’s a pretty good quality to have. It helps you win matches you are not supposed to win”, said Ram. 

Denis Kudla beat Amir Milushev 6-4 6-4 to complete the 4-0 sweep.

The US team did not drop a set in four matches this weekend. 

The previous day Davis Cup rookie Mackenzie McDonald secured the first point for the US team with a 6-4 6-1 win over Fomin before Australian Open semifinalist Tommy Paul came back from 0-4 down in the second set to beat Khumoyun Sultanov 6-1 7-6 (8-6).

“I was excited to see Raj and Austin play today.They have practiced well all week. They had five great days of preparation and as anticipated they came out really sharp and got the early break in the first set. After that it was like two freight trains, there was no stopping them”, said US team captain David Nainkin.

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Cameron Norrie draws Great Britain level to 1-1 against Colombia

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Colombia and Great Britain have drawn level to 1-1 after the first two singles matches on the opening day of the Davis Cup Qualifier at altitude on clay in Bogotà. 

 

Colombia’s Nicholas Mejia clinched the first top 100 win of his career with a 6-2 2-6 6-4 victory against Daniel Evans after 2 hours and 31 minutes. 

Mejia fended off three break points in the first game of the third set. The 22-year-old Colombian player was not able to convert on two break points as Evans held serve in a marathon game to level to 4-4. 

Mejia sealed the win over Evans with his third break in the final game thanks to a backhand passing shot.

“The key to victory ? The attitude, the dedication, not getting nervous more than necessary. I have also learned a lot from previous defeats. I wanted to go out and win. I was not going to give them anything. I am very happy for the point that I was able to give to Colombia. There is a long way to go to think about victory”, said Mejia in the post-match interview. 

Cameron Norrie overcame Nicolas Barrientos 6-2 7-5 in the second singles rubber to level the tie at 1-1. 

Norrie earned an early break at the start of the first set. The British player closed out the first set 6-2 with a double break in the seventh game. 

Norrie started the second set with an immediate break in the first game. Barrientos broke straight back with his first break of the match in the second game to draw level to 1-1. The Colombian player earned five break points on return at 1-2, but Norrie held serve at deuce in a hard-fought fourth game. 

Barrientos earned another break point at 2-3, but Norrie saved it to hold serve. Norrie earned the crucial break in the 11th game to close out the second set 7-5 after a missed volley from Barrientos. 

“Especially given that we are the away team, they have got a huge advantage with us coming here on clay, at altitude, with the fans out there. That’s why we love it and that’s why we are out here playing. I really enjoyed the match today and I can improve on a lot of things going into tomorrow. I was able to put enough balls in the court to get over the line”, said Norrie. 

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