Leyla Fernandez Ousted From Australian Open

By Ben Hamill - February 10 2021

Leyla Fernandez Ousted From Australian Open

Rising young Canadian tennis star Leylah Annie Fernandez has been eliminated from the Australian Open. The tour came to an abrupt end for the 18-year-old when she was dropped in straight sets during Tuesday’s first round by world No. 18 Elise Mertens of Belgium.

Mertens, who ousted Fernandez by taking the match 6-1, 6-3 in one hour and 26 minutes, complimented the young Canadian after the match, saying she had played a strong and aggressive game. Fernandez, who is currently ranked world No. 89, after having held serve and going up to 1-0 in the opening set, followed by serve tied 2-2 in the second set, eventually booked her ticket out this year’s tournament 6 double faults and 25 unforced errors.

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Not A Bad Start For Canada

The young Canadian was the first from among her countrymen to be ousted from the 2021 edition of the Grand Slam event, with Felix Auger-Aliassime, Denis Shapovalov, Milos Raonic, Rebecca Marino, and Bianca Andreescu all besting their respective opponents in their opening matches on Monday.

Next down for Canada was Vancouver-native Vasek Pospisil, who fell 6-2, 6-2, 6-4 to world No. 4 Daniil Medvedev of Russia. The first-round elimination would not have been a case of water off the duck’s back for the Canadian, who hasn’t managed to win a singles match at the AO since 2015.

Rafa Off To A Solid Tournament

World No. 2 Rafael Nadal on Monday got off to a strong start in his push to achieve a men’s record 21 Grand Slam singles titles.

Nadal, who missed out on last week’s ATP Cup in home country Spain because of a problem with stiffness in his lower back, didn’t show any signs of physical discomfort as he made quick work of beating Serbian Laslo Djere in Monday’s first-round match ups.

The past 15 days had not been easy going for him, said Nadal during his post-match interview. Following issues experienced with his back, he said he only wanted to survive opening day, which was what he did.  

A Win Is A Win

Also on the international front, off to a struggling start had been Sofia Kenin of Florida. The 22-year-old battled first-day jitters all throughout her match against world No. 133 Australian and wild-card entry Maddison Inglis.

She eventually did end up beating Inglis, however, but said after the match that the 7-5, 6-4 victory had not been the result of her having played her best game.

Even so, chuckled the Russian-turned-American, a win was a win.

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