Aryna Sabalenka vs Leylah Fernandez
September 9, 2021 7:00 pm EDT
Second seeded Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka will face Leylah Fernandez of Canada in the Semi-Finals of the 2021 US Open. The match is scheduled to be played on Thursday September 9th, 2021 at 7:00pm EST.
A thrilling match is expected as two in-form players square off for a spot in the Final here at the US Open. Aryna Sabalenka is the world number two and has been playing like it lately, dominating all opponents that she has faced so far. Leylah Fernandez is a teenage phenom that has taken the tennis world by storm here in New York, upsetting a host of top seeded players en route to her first major Semi-Final. Sabalenka is the huge favorite on paper but that due to her giant-killing exploits so far, Fernandez cares little about that. Who has what it takes to go all the way and reach their first ever Grand Slam Final?
Aryna Sabalenka is the number two player in the world and the second seed here at the 2021 US Open. After her impressive run to the Wimbledon Semis she has not played many events other than the two major US Open warm up events. A Semi-Final showing at the Rogers Cup was followed by a First Round loss to Paula Badosa in Cincinnati. In the First Round she was surprisingly taken to three sets by Nina Stojanic but has since been on a tear, defeating Tamara Zidansek, Danielle Collins, Elise Mertens and Barbora Krejcikova without dropping a set. In this type of form she is extremely difficult to beat, with her huge groundstrokes among the biggest weapons on the WTA Tour. Her win over Krejcikova was particularly impressive as she totally dominated the French Open champion from the baseline, not allowing her to get comfortable. She has also served very well, and that is important as that can sometimes be her downfall. Leylah Fernandez will be a very tough opponent but in this form the Belarusian must be considered the heavy favorite due to her experience.
Leylah Fernandez is ranked #73 on the WTA Tour and is unseeded here at the US Open. The young Canadian sensation has stunned everyone by her magical run to the Semis, upsetting defending champion Naomi Osaka, Angelique Kerber and Elina Svitolina. She has always been known as a hugely talented player but it is her maturity that has stood out, and her fighting spirit that has allowed her to defeat such experienced players in close matches. While she is the underdog here, she should definitely not be counted out and her lefty groundstrokes and consistency will be a handful for the sometimes erratic Aryna Sabalenka. If she is able to cope with her opponent’s power and move the ball around well she can make this competitive.
This is sure to be a thrilling match, with both women highly motivated to get the win and move on to their first ever Grand Slam Final. Leylah Fernandez has simply been stunning here and is a star in the making, but I think that her run ends here. She has spent significantly more time on court than her opponent Aryna Sabalenka and while the adrenaline will be high, I am sure that she is feeling the effects of those long three setters. Sabalenka is in supreme form, and when she is hitting the ball well and remaining consistent there are not many players in world tennis that are able to withstand her power. Fernandez is a fighter and will surely keep it interesting, but I’m backing the Belarusian to win here in two close sets, finally advancing to her first ever Major Final.