Bianca Andreescu was incredible last night. She once again showed blistering tennis and mental strength under pressure that was so impressive. She plays bigtime tennis is bigtime circumstances. It is the sign of a champion and barring injury surely her tally of slams will rise. There is no way she is a one-trick pony, she is much more than that. She is also a very humble champion. If you have been following tennis of late you knew that the Canadian was a genuine contender here. Let us not forget if you read my preview on the event she was one of my tips for punters to make a few quid. So to me, this certainly doesn’t come as that much of a surprise at all. She has been operating at the highest level all year (when fit).
At a quick glance, her record is 45-4 this season. That is class, no two ways about it. The last time she completed a match and lost was to Sofia Kenin back in Acapulco at the start of March!! She settled into the final in next to no time last night and her level only dropped briefly in the second set. It was relentless bar that. Believe it or not, this was easily the most accepting I have been with one of Rena’s defeat in the four finals. I was half expecting this. I knew that Serena would have to be on it from the word go and not let off, that is how well Andreescu has been playing.
From the point of view as a Serena fan, it is devastating, absolutely gut-wrenching. The search goes on. It feels like a vicious circle of deja vu that just won’t piss off! I can only say it is not nice. You know, I know, everyone knows that we are looking at the Greatest of All Time. As Katie Boulter tweeted something along the lines last night of, ’23, 24′ still the GOAT’. It doesn’t make these defeats any easier to take though. The fanbase wants it so badly, as does our hero and that is what makes it so frustrating. I really liked Serena’s interview last night, where she said about finding out why the real Serena isn’t turning up to these finals and how frustrating it is for her to play like this. I thought it was a no holds barred, straight up answers type of interview from Rena.
It is clear to everyone that the real Serena Williams is not turning up to these finals at the moment and the pressure she must be feeling has to be off the scale. We are talking mass proportions here. You can see it in her play. She dug in deep last night to make real fight off it in the second and the moment Andreescu’s level dropped, she pounced to get the scores level at 5/5. The Canadian just reset again though and it was Rena who looked like she could feel the pressure once again.
I am a firm believer in what Serena is doing is incredible, but it doesn’t make it any less frustrating for any of us that we didn’t get that ‘W’ last night. As she said herself ‘so close, yet so far’, it sums it up perfectly.
Andy Del Potro