New York | Leylah Fernandez enjoys the lights of New York. The final at the recent US Open showed that again on Monday, by signing a stellar performance against France’s Oussien Dudin in her first round match.
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A year after beating the crowd and allure of the US Open tennis, a place was booked in Quebec at the end of the evening at the tournament’s second-largest court, Louis Armstrong.
And the 19-year-old, who loves to say “she wants to make a good show,” has gone from words to deeds. She showed aggressive play, going 6-3 and 6-4 in 1 hour 12 minutes, versus 98 in the world.
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Certainly, with just one win in her last eight tournaments, the 25-year-old Frenchman hasn’t been the most-doubled contender at 14.e the favorite. But by his own admission, Fernandez hasn’t taken anything for granted during those two weeks, despite all the good memories this tournament brings to him.
Her right foot was injured at Roland Garros, the original Lavalloise, winning only one of her three matches since returning to competition three weeks ago in Toronto.
“I’m going one game at a time,” she told the media on Friday. An agreed-upon formula, sure, but it’s appropriate in a case like his.
Leila Fernandez Monday night congratulates herself after a point against Usain Dowden.
Two very good rounds
However, her performance on Monday will reassure her and give her confidence. Right from the start, the left-wing girl took the break from her competition today.
Dowden broke in turn in the seventh game, but Fernandes returned the favor as soon as he returned to serve, then sprinted easily towards the set.
The second set was a cut-and-paste for the first set, with the two players facing each other once, before Layla could walk away, earning her ticket to the second round in the process.
Fernandez will now face 35-year-old Russian Lyudmila Samsonovae world, wednesday. The latter defeated the Czech qualifier Sara Bilic only 16, 6-3, 6-1.
This will be the first confrontation between the two players.
Against Dodin, Layla has been particularly impressive on serve, an aspect of her game that has never been a strength, but that she seems to have refined over the past few months.
She had 10 aces in the showdown and only two double faults. Fernandez also had 74% of the contested points in the first ball.
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