World No. 48 Bianca Andreescu advanced to the third round of the ongoing US Open 2022 after defeating No 15 seed Beatriz Haddad Maia 6-2, 6-4, on Thursday.
The 22-year-old Canadian put in a vintage performance to set up an exciting third-round clash with France’s Caroline Garcia. Coming off an up-and-down three-set win over Harmony Tan in the first round, Andreescu played a physical and disciplined match to defeat the surging Brazilian.
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Haddad Maia has been in fantastic form during the summer, winning back-to-back titles in Nottingham and Birmingham and making the biggest final of her career in Toronto. She earned her first main-draw win at the US Open in the first round with a dominating 6-0, 6-0 win over Ana Konjuh.
“I actually like playing these tougher opponents because I think I’m more on my A-game when I play higher ranked players, which is a good tendency but also a bad tendency because I want to be like that with whoever I play," Andreescu said.
“And I also like to have tough draws because I feel like the victory is much sweeter in the end. Like, let’s say I win the tournament and I have a tougher draw. I really like that," she added.
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Andreescu’s champion’s mettle was on display in their first meeting at the tour level. She went unbroken in the match, saving all five break points she faced while breaking Haddad Maia three times.
In the first set, she fired just three unforced errors. She finished the match with a tidy 11 winners to 14 unforced errors, while Haddad Maia hit 20 winners to 30 unforced errors.
Having beaten the player with the second-most wins since the start of July, Andreescu will now face the winningest: Cincinnati champion Garcia. Ranked No. 18, Garcia extended her winning streak to 10 matches with a 6-3, 6-1 win over Anna Kalinskaya. Into the third round at the US Open for the fifth time in her career, Garcia is bidding to make the Round of 16 for the first time in New York.
“It’s a great challenge. It will be a tough match either way and I’m really looking forward to it. We know that the third round in the Slams is a great battle. I need to recover the best way I can, get the confidence from the two first matches and Cincinnati, and go get it," Garcia said.
Friday’s showdown will be a rematch of the Bad Homburg final in July. Garcia edged Andreescu on the grass, 6-7(5), 6-4, 6-4, to win the first of her three titles this season.
“I try to focus on my game, what I like to do, what I want to do. I think it’s the most important. Bianca is an aggressive player, powerful. But my game style is still the same and I want to keep improving on it and it’s going to be a great match to do so," Garcia added.
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