Bianca Andreescu wins 17th consecutive match and books spot in China Open quarters
Canadian will next face former world No. 1 Naomi Osaka for the 1st time
Bianca Andreescu's historic season continues.
The Mississauga, Ont. native won her 17th consecutive match after defeating American Jennifer Brady 6-1, 6-3 Thursday at the China Open. It's the longest win streak in 2019.
It now sets up a tantalizing quarter-final match between Andreescu and the former world No. 1, Naomi Osaka. The two have never faced one another before.
"Ever since she started doing well at the U.S. Open, Australian Open, I've really wanted to play her," Andreescu said of the 21-year-old Osaka. "I'm glad I have the opportunity now. I think it's going to be a really tough match. She's an incredible athlete and player. If I just go out there and play my game, hopefully I can do good things."
WATCH | Andreescu easily moves into quarter-finals:
Andreescu hasn't lost a match she's completed since March 1, and if you take away the two losses Andreescu suffered when a shoulder injury forced her out of matches, that's now 27 wins in a row.
There's more. Andreescu, 19, is now a WTA-best 48-4 on the season, including 8-0 against players ranked in the top 10.
Andreescu now faces Osaka in Friday's quarter-final match, set to begin at 9 a.m. ET. It's a chance for her to once again — not that she should have to at this point — prove she belongs in the top echelon of women's tennis.
Earlier Thursday, Osaka defeated American Alison Riske to advance. Andreescu and Osaka are the last two U.S. Open champions — the up-and-coming tennis stars now clash in a marquee match with a spot in the semis on the line.
Osaka called Andreescu "an amazing player."
"I feel like she's doing better than I was last year, so it's all cool," Osaka said. "I have to learn from her, too."
Canadian puts on a clinic
Andreescu was clinical against Brady in her round of 16 match Thursday night in Beijing. She broke the American three times, including the first game of the match, to take the first set in just 33 minutes.
"She's a very good server, so I had to make sure my serve went well today," Andreescu said. "I think when I do play big servers, my serve kind of levels up with them unconsciously. I don't know how but it does, which is a good thing. I'm really pleased with that."
It was much of the same in the second set as Andreescu mixed her powerful forehand with soft, deft drop shots to propel her to victory. The Canadian won the second set 6-3.
"I think today was a very solid match from my end," she said. "I executed the right tactics, I stayed as positive as I could because yesterday wasn't so (good) on the attitude aspect of things.
"Today, I'm really proud with my attitude. I think that was the main thing today, and my serve."
What Andreescu has done this season is nothing short of remarkable and it is continuing in Beijing. How she's done it is equally sensational.
The greater the pressure, the better Andreescu plays. She's won 13 consecutive matches that go three sets. She senses the big moment and relishes playing on the big stage. Also, as events roll on, Andreescu seems to get better with each match.
She had 22 days off between her U.S Open victory and the China Open — perhaps there was a bit of rust in her first match in China but that seems to have disappeared quickly.
And so once again Andreescu gets another chance to knock-off a top-ten player — Osaka is currently ranked fourth.
Marquee matchup looms
Andreescu and Osaka have never met in a match before, setting up a tantalizing first-ever showdown to highlight the remaining eight at the China Open.
The two blasted onto the tennis scene at back-to-back U.S. Opens. No one will ever forget the controversial victory by Osaka over Serena Williams in 2018 to claim her first Grand Slam title. And then just last month, Andreescu also defeated Williams at the U.S. Open to claim her first Grand Slam title.
Osaka's victory marked the first Grand Slam win by a Japanese singles tennis player. Andreescu's marked the first Grand Slam win by a Canadian singles tennis player. Both have become the faces of tennis for their respective countries.
It's been a breakout season for Andreescu, who won the Indian Wells tournament in California in March, and the Rogers Cup title in Toronto in August.
On Sunday, Andreescu qualified for the year-end WTA Finals, scheduled for Shenzhen, China, from Oct. 27 to Nov. 3.
with files from Canadian Press