Leylah Fernandez bows out at Indian Wells

Published October 13, 2021, 1:09 PM

by Kristel Satumbaga-Villar

Leylah Fernandez (AFP)

Leylah Fernandez crashed out of her singles and doubles campaigns Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) after bowing to experienced rivals at the Indian Wells Masters.

The 19-year-old Canadian, who is of Filipino descent, first yielded to American Shelby Rogers, 2-6, 6-1, 7-6 (4), after a little more than two and a half hours in the Round of 16.

She returned a few hours later with American Coco Gauff to compete in the doubles quarterfinals, but fell short against second seed veterans and 2021 Wimbledon champions Hsieh Su-wei of Chinese Taipei and Elise Mertens of Belgium, 7-5, 6-4.

It was still a remarkable feat for Fernandez despite the defeats after beating some of the big guns in the singles.

Seeded 23rd in the singles, earned an opening-round bye then went on to sweep French veteran Alize Cornet, 6-2, 6-3.

She followed it up with a third-round upset victory over Russian ninth seed and 2021 French Open finalist Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, 5-7, 6-3, 6-4.

In the doubles, Fernandez and Gauff were unseeded in the field and opened up with a 6-1, 6-1win over Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu and Czech Republic’s Renata Voracova.

They went on to stun fifth seed Nicole Melichar-Martinez of the United States and Netherlands’ Demi Schuurs, 6-3, 6-2, before yielding to Hsieh and Mertens.