The 19-year-old Canadian tennis player Bianca Andreescu, beat the 37-year-old Serena Williams 6-3,7-5 in the U.S. Open final. Andreescu is the first Canadian elite athlete to win a Grand Slam title, and the first singles title win ever for a woman making her first appearance at the U.S. Open.
A year ago, the Canadian did not manage to qualify for the tournament. This year, she arrived at Flushing Meadows with bigger ambitions. Although she ended 2018 with a ranking of 178, she improved her performance significantly to reach 15th.
In the New York tournament, she dropped only two sets showing no signs of a slowdown.
Bianca Andreescu commented that her success is partly due to the self-help books she is reading in her free time. She admitted being a huge fan of Tony Robbins. The rising tennis star acknowledged that much of the improvement came from developing strong mental discipline.
Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau was among the first to congratulate the young champion on Twitter. Andreescu thanked him warmly, saying that she would not be here today without Tennis Canada’s support.
For Serena Williams, it was the fourth consecutive defeat in Grand Slam finals which prevented her from the much-anticipated record-equaling 24th Grand Slam title.
In 2018, she lost the U.S. Open final to Naomi Osaka. It was a controversial match during which Serena got into several confrontations with chair umpire Carlos Ramos. He issued three penalties for her during the game, accusing her of allegedly receiving coaching.
Serena had a nervous breakdown and smashed her tennis racket while calling Ramos ”a thief” for taking a point from her. In the summer she penned a personal essay for Harper’s Bazaar to apologize to Naomi Osaka for taking ”her moment.”
In 2018 and 2019, Serena Williams lost Wimbledon finals to Angelique Kerber and Simona Halep respectively.
On Saturday, the former No. 1 in the world made only 44% of her first serves and won 30% of her second-serve points. She also sent down eight double faults. As Williams admitted in the post-match interview, ”the real Serena did not show up tonight.”
Marion Bartoli, a close friend of Serena Williams and a 2013 Wimbledon champion, commented in an interview that Serena puts too much pressure on herself to win her 24th title.
Despite the defeat, Serena Williams enjoyed exceptional royal support at the Arthur Ashe Stadium. Her close friend, the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle flew to New York to watch the match.
Do you think that Serena Williams will be able to win her much anticipated 24th Grand Slam title despite turning 38 this month?