Andreescu defeats Cornet for the first time; meets Zheng in Toronto

2019 champion Bianca Andreescu scored another important victory on home soil at the Rogers-presented National Bank Open on Wednesday night, scoring her first win over a player who had troubled her mightily in the past.

Andreescu defeated Alizé Cornet 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 in 2 hours and 26 minutes to reach the round of 16 of the tournament for the third time in her career. Andreescu has now won eight straight games at the event, which is being held in Toronto, the closest major city to her hometown.

Words of the winner: “I think it was just the fighting spirit of both of us,” Andreescu reflected on the game. “She’s very consistent and I really had to push myself, especially in the difficult moments. I think I played those key moments a bit better today.

“I think these are the key moments that you really need, especially in these close matches. And having them definitely gives you a lot of confidence. And I hope to continue that for the rest of the tournament.”

Statistics corner: Cornet had defeated Andreescu in straight sets in their two previous encounters, both of which took place during last year’s grass season, in Berlin and in the first round of Wimbledon. The third time was the appeal for Andreescu as she finally got her first victory over Cornet.

Andreescu had not won consecutive games on hard for almost a year, with her most recent wins on the surface coming at the 2021 US Open. However, the former US Open champion put back her top 10 win over Daria Kasatkina from the first round, 27 winners fired past Cornet.

Andreescu also had 27 unforced errors in the encounter. However, Cornet ended the duel with fewer clean numbers than the Canadian, with 21 winners to 30 unforced errors.

Zheng meets Andreescu; Teichmann annoys Kontaveit

Earlier Wednesday, top-five players Ons Jabeur and Anett Kontaveit were ousted from the tournament in their opening games after first-round byes.

Rising 19-year-old Chinese Zheng Qinwen led 6-1, 2-1 against No. 5 seed Jabeur when Jabeur was eliminated from the game in the second round due to a stomach ache. Zheng will be Andreescu’s opponent in the round of 16, which will be their first meeting.

Zheng now has two consecutive hard court match wins at the tour level for the first time since January. She also clinched the first top 10 win of her career by defeating Jabeur by retirement.

Zheng, ranked No. 51 in the world, is in the midst of her breakthrough season, which started at No. 143. Zheng was the only player to grab a set from eventual champion Iga Swiatek at Roland Garros.

And world No. 21 Jil Teichmann upset seed No. 2 Kontaveit 6-4, 6-4 in 1 hour and 27 minutes to advance to the Round of 16 in Toronto. Teichmann converted four of her six break points while also deflecting six of the eight break points she faced.

Teichmann scored her fifth top five win of her career and she defeated a current world No. 2 for the second time. Previously, she beat then-No. 2 Naomi Osaka in her run to the WTA 1000 Finals in Cincinnati last year.

Teichmann, who defeated former world No. 1 Venus Williams in the first round, will face another former world No. 1, two-time National Bank Open champion Simona Halep, in the round of 16. Teichmann and Halep will meet for the first time.

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