Bianca Andreescu inspired by grandmother’s wish
Bianca Andreescu has shared what it has been like to see her promising career derailed by injuries.
Andreescu fought back from a set down to oust former world No 1 and 18th seed Victoria Azarenka in the first round of the French Open and followed that up with a second round win over Emma Navarro.
She admits that her career hasn’t quite panned out the way she might have expected after she won the US Open.
“Looking back at 2019, I always thought I’m just going to improve and improve. Like, I’m just going to get better,” said Andreescu.
“Then a lot of stuff happened and kind of went the opposite way.
“I mean, I always look back at 2019, but I also want to stay in the present moment. It’s always nice to have that reminder of I’m a Grand Slam champion because sometimes I forget.”
Andreescu hopes to be able to treat her ageing grandmother to another Grand Slam celebration.
“I started thinking about my grandmother because she’s getting old, and I’m very close to her,” said Andreescu of her fightback against Azarenka.
“She said, ‘Bianca’ — in Romanian, she doesn’t speak English. She’s, like, ‘Bianca, I really want to watch you win another major’. So I had that in the back of my head at one point when I was down 3-1.
“I was, okay, I started to get emotional too. At that point something, like, just came out of me, and I started playing better.”
Andreescu insists that she doesn’t know the secret to staying fit and healthy just yet but hopes to unlock it as she approaches her 23rd birthday.
“I wish I knew. I would tell the whole world,” Andreescu said.
“Honestly, I’m trying to figure it out. There’s good days; there’s bad days. I mean, that’s sport. You are never always going to play 100 percent unless you’re Carlos Alcaraz right now and Iga (Swiatek).
“Jokes aside, I’m just trying to give my best every single day. I know if I stay patient, results will come.”
In nine prior main-draw outings, the Canadian had never advanced past the second round at any other Grand Slams, apart from the US Open, before her victory over Navarro.
Her match in Paris is on Saturday against Ukrainian Lesia Tsurenko. Tsurenko leads Andreescu 2-0 in their previous meetings.
Tsurenko, though, prevailed courtesy of Andreescu’s injury woes as she earned both those wins thanks to retirements, the most recent of which occurred earlier this year in Hua Hin in Thailand as a result of yet another shoulder issue for the Canadian.
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