Leylah Fernandez news: Canadian ‘very, very happy’ after saving five match points to retain Monterrey title

Leylah Fernandez celebrates

It took her nearly three hours to see off the challenge of Camila Osorio, but Leylah Fernandez prevailed as she saved five match points en route to successfully defending her Abierto GNP Seguros title in Mexico.

Back in 2021 Fernandez won her maiden WTA Tour singles title in Monterrey without dropping a set, but this year she really had to work to keep the trophy, winning the final 6-7 (5-7), 6-4, 7-6 (7-3) in two hours and 52 minutes.

The opening set alone was a few minutes shy of an hour and it was Fernandez who had the early advantage as she raced into a 3-0 lead, but Osorio got back on serve in game nine before edging the tie-breaker.

The second seed again started stronger in the second set as she broke twice to build a 4-1 advantage and, although the Colombian managed to get one break back, Fernandez took it to a decider.

After the defending champion broke in the opening game of set three, Osorio won four games in a row to take a 4-1 lead before the 19-year-old got back on serve in game seven.

The 2021 US Open runner-up then saved a match point in game 10 and four more in game 12 before the match had to be settled via the tie-breaker. After an early mini break from the fifth seed, Fernandez won six of the final seven points to seal the deal.

“Today it was a very, very tough match, not only physically or tennis-wise, but mentally,” she said. “Camila, she’s a tough player to play against. She’s very crafty, she does slices, high balls, it’s very unpredictable.

“I’m very, very happy to have gone through these hard moments, and have fought, found solutions. And Camila, I hope we have many, many more finals like this, because without her, I don’t think this tournament, this final, would be [as] special.”