Skip to content

Canada's Leylah Fernandez beats Poland's Magda Linette in French Open first round

Canada's Leylah Annie Fernandez returns to Belgium's Yanina Wickmayer during a Billie Jean King Cup qualifiers singles match, in Vancouver, on Friday, April 14, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

PARIS — Canada's Leylah Fernandez advanced to the second round of the French Open on Sunday, beating Magda Linette of Poland 6-3, 1-6, 6-3, in a first-round match.

Fernandez now leads the head-to-head 2-1, having also beaten Linette in three sets in the first round of Roland-Garros back in 2020. Fernandez entered the tournament ranked 49th in the WTA rankings, while Linette was ranked 21st.

The 20-year-old from Laval, Que., overcame some difficulties with her serve, including issues with her ball toss, to secure the victory. She committed nine double faults and only hit two aces throughout the match.

But she managed to create 13 breakpoint opportunities and converted three, including one late in the third set to give her a 5-3 lead.

In the first set, Fernandez quickly found herself trailing when Linette broke her serve in the third game and took a 2-1 lead. Fernandez responded by breaking Linette's serve twice to take the set.

Fernandez also had a poor start to the second set, conceding the first three games en route to losing the set.

In the deciding set, Fernandez committed only one double fault and won 12 out of 15 second-serve points.

Fernandez, who reached the French Open quarterfinals last year, is scheduled to play Denmark's Clara Tauson in the next round. Tauson beat Aliaksandra Sasnovich of Belarus 6-2, 6-0, in the first round.

Three Canadians are in action on Monday. Montreal's Felix Auger-Aliassime plays Italian Fabio Fognini, Denis Shapovalov of Richmond Hill, Ont., faces American Brandon Nakashima, and Vancouver's Rebecca Marino takes on Russia's Diana Shnaider.

Toronto's Bianca Andreescu is set to open her tournament on Tuesday against Victoria Azarenka of Belarus.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 28, 2023.

The Canadian Press

push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks