Press "Enter" to skip to content

Tennis Teens Amaze at US Open

Queens, New York —(Map)

Three teenage tennis stars have been amazing crowds at this year’s US Open. One of the athletes has left the contest because of an injury, but two others have reached the semi-finals, after defeating many highly-rated players.

Grand Slam Tournaments
     In tennis, there are many competitions, but four “major” tournaments are considered the most important. They’re called Grand Slam tournaments because winning all four major contests in one year is called a Grand Slam. The US Open is one of these four contests.

Leylah Fernandez, Emma Raducanu, and Carlos Alcaraz
Three teenage tennis stars – Leylah Fernandez (left), Emma Raducanu (center), and Carlos Alcaraz (right) – have been amazing crowds at this year’s US Open. Alcaraz has left the contest because of an injury, but Fernandez and Raducanu have reached the semi-finals.
(Sources: Leylah Fernandez, Emma Raducanu, [CC BY-SA 2.0] by si.robi, Carlos Alcaraz [CC BY-SA 4.0] by Yannick Jamot.)

Leylah Annie Fernandez

Leylah Annie Fernandez is a 19-year-old Canadian who began playing as a pro in 2019. She didn’t have great success at first, but in March of this year, she won the Monterrey Open.

Fernandez, a left-hander, is small compared to many other players, and has a different playing style. She often hits the ball early, trying to return it on an angle so her opponent has to struggle to reach it.

😕

This image has not been loaded because of your cookie choices. To view the content, you can accept 'Non-necessary' cookies.

Leylah Fernandez defeated Naomi Osaka, who’s ranked third in the world. She also defeated the world’s #5 player and #17 player. She’ll meet the world’s #2 player in the semi-finals. Above, Fernandez during her match with Elina Svitolina on Monday.

So far, Fernandez’s style is working wonderfully. She defeated Naomi Osaka, who’s ranked third in the world. She also defeated the world’s #5 player and #17 player. She’ll meet Aryna Sabalenka, the world’s #2 player, in the semi-finals.

Emma Raducanu

Earlier this year, 18-year-old British athlete Emma Raducanu was ranked #339 in the world. But people began to notice when she made it to Wimbledon’s fourth round this summer.

In the US Open, she’s continued to impress people. She had to win three matches just to qualify for the tournament. After that, she won four more matches to reach the quarter-finals. Every tennis match has at least two sets. Raducanu made it through all these matches without losing a single set.

😕

This image has not been loaded because of your cookie choices. To view the content, you can accept 'Non-necessary' cookies.

British athlete Emma Raducanu had to win three matches just to qualify for the tournament. After that, she won five more matches without losing a single set. She’ll face Maria Sakkari in the semi-finals. Above, Raducanu in her match against Shelby Rogers on Monday.

On Monday, Raducanu beat American Shelby Rogers, who had just beaten the world’s #1 female, Australian Ash Barty.

Yesterday, Raducanu faced #11 Belinda Bencic who won the gold medal at this summer’s Olympics. Raducanu managed to defeat Bencic 6-3, 6-4. She has now reached the semi-finals, where she’ll face Maria Sakkari, the world’s #18 player.

Carlos Alcaraz

Carlos Alcaraz, an 18-year-old from Spain, entered the US Open ranked #55 in the world. On the tournament’s fifth day, he defeated the world’s #3 player, Stefanos Tsitsipas, in a 5-set match. On Sunday, he beat Peter Gojowczyk in another 5-set match, becoming the youngest player ever to reach the quarter-finals at the US Open.

😕

This image has not been loaded because of your cookie choices. To view the content, you can accept 'Non-necessary' cookies.

Carlos Alcaraz defeated the world’s #3 player, Stefanos Tsitsipas, and became the youngest player ever to reach the quarter-finals at the US Open. Above, Alcaraz before his injury during the match on Tuesday night.

On Tuesday night, Alcaraz was forced to quit in the middle of a match with #15 Félix Auger-Aliassime. He had an injury to a muscle in his right leg – probably the result of his long matches earlier in the tournament. Still, most people expect to see Alcaraz in many more tournaments in the future.

Concerns About Future Pressure

Many people believe that being young and unknown gives these players more freedom, since they’re playing without much pressure. Because no one expected them to win at all, no matter how far they go, they’re making progress.

Melbourne, Australia - 20 January 2020 - Naomi Osaka on Rod Laver Arena
Older players warn that though it’s exciting to see young players do great things, the pressure of continuing to play well can be incredibly difficult. Naomi Osaka (above), once the world’s #1 female, is only 23. She says she may take some time off after her recent defeat.
(Source: Rob Keating [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons.)

Many older players warn that even though it’s exciting to see young players do great things, the pressure of continuing to play well can be incredibly difficult. They point to a long history of young players who started off strong, but had trouble continuing to play at the same level.

“Buckle up,” says Ms. Rogers, the 28-year-old American who was beaten by Raducanu. “It’s a long ride.”


Did You Know…?
Fernandez was 18 when she started the tournament, but celebrated her 19th birthday on Monday. Raducanu is the first player ever to get into the US Open through qualifying matches and still manage to reach the semi-finals.


Update:
Raducanu and Fernandez both won their semi-finals matches. That meant they faced each other in the final match of the US Open. Both women played very strong games, but the match was finally won by Raducanu, 6-3, 6-4.

Never before has anyone who had to play qualifying matches to get into the tournament ever made it to the finals, much less won. The strength of these two teenage athletes has shocked the tennis world.

😕

This map has not been loaded because of your cookie choices. To view the content, you can accept 'Non-necessary' cookies.

Share:

Settings

Most news on NewsForKids.net is appropriate for all ages. When there is news that may not be suitable for all ages, we try to tag it. You can use the setting below to control whether content tagged in this manner is shown.