Elated Bianca Andreescu: I’m the ‘f-ing’ champion of Indian Wells
She was a rank outsider at the start of the tournament, but two weeks later Bianca Andreescu can call herself the BNP Paribas Open champion.
The 18-year-old initially gave the tennis world a glimpse of her talent when she finished runner-up at the Auckland Open in January, but no one would have predicted her fairytale run in Indian Wells.
She started the tournament as an unseeded wildcard and beat the likes of Dominica Cibulkova, Wang Qiang, Garbine Muguruza and Elina Svitolina on the way to the final.
Three-time Grand Slam winner Angelique Kerber was her opponent on Sunday, but she produced a composed display to secure her first WTA Tour title with a 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 victory.
She followed it world No 1 Naomi Osaka’s footsteps as the Japanese player also won her maiden singles title in Indian Wells last year.
“It’s incredible to have my name beside so many incredible champions,” the teenager said afterwards. “It’s a dream come true.”
She added: “It’s been a crazy ride. Truly a Cinderella story. Naomi did this last year. And now to be able to have my name in front of so many amazing champions – it means the world to me.
“It’s definitely inspiration seeing her claim the trophy here last year, and winning two Grand Slams right after that has been amazing to see.”
Almost exactly a year ago, Andreescu lost in the second round of an ITF 25K tournament in Japan and now she is a Premier Mandatory title holder.
“A year ago, during this period, I had been struggling a lot with my tennis and with my body, too. So it’s crazy what a year can do,” she said. “I was playing 25Ks in Japan, and now I’m the – can I say the F word? No, I can’t. The f-ing champion of Indian Wells. It’s crazy. Crazy is the word of the tournament for me. Just crazy.”
More from Tennis365:
Comment – Emma Raducanu’s comments after her first WTA Tour win highlight her unprecedented dilemma
On her return to Romania, the homeland of her father Ian, she lost her focus and very nearly the match against Hercog.
A match of firsts for Emma Raducanu as she beats Polona Hercog in Cluj for maiden win at WTA Tour level
It’s a first win at WTA Tour level for Emma Raducanu.
Red-hot Cameron Norrie sees off Marton Fucsovics in Austria to set up clash against Felix Auger-Aliassime
The British number one claimed his seventh consecutive win.
Preview: Emma Raducanu back in action as she headlines the Transylvania Open
The WTA Tour rumbles on in Romania as Emma Raducanu looks to return to winning ways.
Emma Raducanu’s Best Moments On and Off The Court: From Wimbledon to the US Open, Met Gala and James Bond premiere
A pictorial of Emma Raducanu’s whirlwind few months.
Andy Murray on playing in the Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic era: ‘I feel lucky to have played against them’
“They allowed me to improve by setting the bar so high.”
‘I believe it will [get crazier] for Serena,’ says auctioneer after signed Serena Williams rookie card sets record
“Serena will be included in products long after she’s retired.”
‘I still struggle, but I am super confident next year will be better,’ says Simona Halep
“I still love the sport and love being on the court,” says Simona Halep.
Victoria premier sticks to his guns over double-vaxxed stance for Australian Open as he criticises double standards
Victoria Premier Dan Andrews refuses to change his mind.
Andy Murray highlights key reason for his ability to chase more balls down after upset win over Hubert Hurkacz
“It was a good win in tough circumstances,” says Murray.