Serena’s Begins Farewell Tour Tonight In Toronto v Bencic; Gauff v Rybakina; Osaka, Raducanu Out
Serena Williams headlines Wednesday at the WTA Canadian Masters in Toronto today. The legend who will retire in the coming months, will take on fellow Olympic gold medalist Belinda Bencic this evening.
Bencic beat Serena en route to her 2015 Canadian title, and is excited to face Serena.
“I’m super excited, I couldn’t be more excited,” Bencic told the WTA Insider. “When I saw the draw I hoped she would win her first round and I would win my first round and it would happen. It’s super inspiring to see her. I read [her essay] today in Vogue. It was so nicely written and so honest. Now that it’s soon to be over, you realize even more how amazing she is and what she’s achieved. It’s beyond words.”
Among the other matches on Wednesday, we’ll see Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina taking on teen Coco Gauff.
Iga Swiatek, Leylah Fernandez, Simona Halep and Bianca Andreescu are also on court in second round play.
Yesterday, Canadian favorite Andreescu overcame some medical issues early on to hold off San Jose winner Daria Kasatkina 7-6(5), 6-4. Andreescu had to see the trainer in the first set breaker.
“If anybody’s asking I’m feeling much better,” Andreescu said. “It has nothing to do with my back. I felt really dizzy. I have no idea what it was. Maybe something that I ate or all the stress leading up to the tournament. I have no idea.
“But I feel better and I’m super happy that I was able to clutch it out. I wish my attitude was a bit better, but I really did everything I could with what I had.”
In the nightcap, Maria Sakkari hung on to defeat Sloane Stephens in three sets.
Upsets hit the event as Naomi Osaka had to retire to Kaia Kanepi down a set and 3-0. Osaka, who has been struggling with an achilles injury, retired due to a back issue.
“I felt my back from the start of the match, and despite trying my best to push through it I just wasn’t able to today,” Osaka said. “I’d like to pay credit to Kaia for playing well and want to wish her all the best for the rest of the tournament.”
US Open winner Emma Raducanu was bounced by defending champion Camila Giorgi 7-6(0), 6-2.
“I think it was a really good match, to be honest. I think that the level was pretty high. Especially in the first set,” Raducanu said.
“Camila is a great opponent. She won this tournament last year. I just need to get better at dealing with players who play probably as quick as she does.”
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