Belinda Bencic and Bianca Andreescu Clinch First-Ever Major Semifinal Berths at US Open
(September 4, 2019) FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – Both Canada’s Bianca Andreescu and Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic have reached their first major tournament final four at the US Open on Wednesday.
No. 13 seed Bencic rallied from a first set break to beat her friend Croatia’s Donna Vekic 6-4, 6-4 during the day session. Bencic backed up her win over the No. 1 seed and defending champion in the fourth round – Naomi Osaka.
“After the match, the emotions are still here,” said the Swiss. “Just very happy about it, for sure. I knew today was going to be a very difficult match. Donna is in great form now. She showed it again today.
“I think we played a very good match with high-quality rallies. It was definitely not easy. I’m happy. I don’t know, I stayed calm in the important moments. Yeah, I just managed to win.
“Of course semifinals feels great right now.”
“I think she was just playing better tennis overall today,” said the 23rd seed Veklic. “I felt like I couldn’t get three good points together. I was, like, playing one point good, then bad. I don’t know. I didn’t really have a lot of rhythm out there today. I was just struggling a little bit with that.
“I think she played really well the important points.”
“It’s my first time in Grand Slam quarterfinals. I really enjoyed my time in New York. I’m definitely disappointed right now because I really wanted to win.”
Bencic last reached the quarterfinals as a teenager in 2014, and since has had her ups and downs with injuries, starts and restarts of comebacks.
“Well, I was dreaming, of course, about this day coming, but you never know what’s going to happen. You’re not thinking about it. You’re just right in the moment. Either you’re practicing or focusing on your match,” Bencic said.
“I worked hard for this. It’s not like I never imagined I could do this. Still, like, I stayed in the moment. Yeah, very nice feeling.”
Benic will take on Bianca Andreescu for a place in the final.
“For sure Andreescu has a lot of variation in her game,” Bencic said of the next opponent.
No. 15 Bianca Andreescu, 19, came back from a set down to beat No. 25 Elise Mertens 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 in the first match of the night session, becoming the first teenager to reach the final four at the US Open since another 19-year-old Caroline Wozniacki reached the 2009. On top of all of that, the Indian Wells and Toronto champion is making her US Open debut.
“I just told myself to keep fighting and hope that I can switch things around basically,” Andeescu said she told herself when she fell behind. “I tried to stay more aggressive than the first set, and I felt like I was missing a lot in the first set, as well.
“I saw that she was picking on my backhand a lot, so I tried to go more down the line with my backhand so she can go back to my forehand so I can use my forehand, because I like my forehand.
“So she executed some good tactics in the first set. “
“I’m going to be honest. I don’t think I played my best tennis. I just fought really well with what I had every single day. I think that’s the most important thing for me, and I’m sure for every athlete you’re not going to have good days every day.
“So I just try my best to figure out what’s going well and what’s not and just go from there.”
“At this point I think anyone can win the tournament. The other semifinalists are incredible athletes, tennis players. So I know it’s not going to be easy tomorrow, and if I win tomorrow, in the finals, as well.
“So I’m just going to take in this moment now. I think I play tomorrow, so hopefully I can do good things tomorrow.”