MELBOURNE, Australia – However many Grand Slam matches Canadian Bianca Andreescu wins in a career that’s still in its infancy, she’ll always remember this one.
It is the first, of course – her maiden Grand Slam main-draw victory.
But it was the way she did it that will remain engraved somewhere in her tennis psyche.
It’ll be a resource she can draw upon in the future. When she thinks she’s in a situation that seems hopeless, she’ll now know that there’s always hope.
The 7-6 (7), 6-7 (0), 6-3 victory over 16-year-old American Whitney Osuigwe took two hours and 46 minutes on a stifling hot day during which several male players had to retire.
Andreescu was struggling with cramps in her calfs, which required some treatment in the second set. Her back was acting up again, requiring a medical timeout after she broke Osuigwe to take the lead in the third set.
But the fight in the player overcame the challenges.
“All I can say is that it’s one of the toughest matches I’ve ever played and I’m so, so, SO happy I pulled through,” Andreescu said afterward. “I have no idea how I won today. My body was a mess – especially after the first set. I just fought.”
Hello, top 100
At a career high No. 106 in the WTA Tour rankings coming into the match, the victory will tick off another box.
Andreescu will break into the top 100 for the first time. In fact, she’ll be inside the top 90.
She was in shock when she heard that.
“No way. Oh my God,” she said. “I don’t know what to say. I’m just so happy.”
There’s more work to be done. On Thursday, Andreescu will meet No. 13 Anastasia Sevastova of Latvia for a spot in the third round.