PARIS | Even though nothing worked out at Roland Garros for Bianca Andreescu on Saturday, she didn't freak out and she didn't let negative thoughts overwhelm her.
“A few years ago, I would have locked myself in a room for hours, not talking to anyone. I might have broken my racquet, but that doesn't happen anymore!” assured the 22-year-old Ontarian after suffering a bitter loss in two identical sets of 6-1 against Ukrainian Lesia Tsurenko.
“After a defeat, I am now better at telling myself that it's not the end of the world, that it's normal, that it happens and that's sport,” she added. p>
His opponent in the third round didn't even need to be extraordinary to win.
A matter of centimeters
Bianca shot herself in the foot committing no less than 22 unforced errors in just one hour of play. It's not complicated, almost all of her shots were offside or landed in the net.
“It's never fun to lose, but losing like this is even more infuriating,” said Andreescu, who was still relaxed in front of the reporters.
The Last Hope Canadian singles at this second Grand Slam of the season also struggled on serve, winning only one game when she had the balls in hand.
“Tsurenko played very well. But I know I wasn't even close to being at my best. I don't think the score reflects the game. There were close plays, but I wasn't able to close the books,” analyzed Andreescu.
“My shots were just a little too deep, as was my serve. We're talking a few centimeters here and there.”
Two worlds of difference
This performance was nothing like those of the Bianca the French had seen in action in the first two rounds: fighting against the 18th seed, the Belarusian Victoria Azarenka, and expeditious against the American Emma Navarro. Although she has a reputation for being a comeback, on Saturday there was no coming back for the 2019 U.S. Open champion.
Bianca started the second set well by taking Tsurenko's serve, but she played the same trick on him in the next game. It was done for Andreescu.
She was often taken on the wrong foot, she was imprecise and her balls lacked bite.
In the end, “Bibi” only managed six winning shots, compared to 20 for her rival 33 years old.
“It's hard to accept defeat after having had two good games before. However, I felt good before today's meeting. It was a bad day for me and a good one for her”, philosophized the Canadian.
Moreover, there was a lack of atmosphere on the Simonne-Mathieu at the start of the Parisian evening. Which must not have helped the 42nd player in the world, who normally runs on applause. Not once did she interact with the crowd, proof that she was out of sorts.
“The match never got up, so the crowd never been in it either, she said. It doesn't help when you can't find your rhythm…the audience hasn't found their rhythm anymore.”
Andreescu thus recorded a third defeat against the 66th racquet of the WTA. However, she was injured in the first two meetings, at the 2018 Fed Cup and in Thailand last February.
“I feel like my style of play suits him, especially when my balls don't fit the way I would like. […] I thought I had a good strategy, but I will have to review it the next time I face him!” recognized Bianca.
In mixed doubles
Tsurenko has therefore secured her place in the round of 16, where she will face the favorite and defending champion , Poland's Iga Swiatek.
The latter was not idle by sending the Chinese Xinyu Wang, 80th, to the showers after 51 minutes and thanks to a perfect performance of 6-0 and 6-0.
For his part, Andreescu will continue his stay in Paris by playing a match of second in mixed doubles, Sunday, accompanied by New Zealander Michael Venus. They will play against American Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Croatian Mate Pavic.