At the National Bank Open presented by Rogers, we could get to see not one but two talented teen sister duos in action. And if not this summer, then maybe next summer.
In any event, the Andreevas and Fruhvirtovas—more specifically 16-year-old Mirra and 18-year-old Erika Andreeva of Russia (top photo) and 16-year-old Brenda and 18-year-old Linda Fruhvirtova of Czechia—may be making their way to Canada this summer.
So let’s start things off with the young women from Siberia.
In late April, Mirra Andreeva, the younger of the two, had all of tennis talking. Since battling in the final of the AO Junior Championships back in January, she’s kept the momentum going, losing only 5 of the 37 matches she’s played (including qualification rounds and counting her matches at all levels).
At the Mutua Madrid Open, she extended her winning streak to 16 before she was toppled by World No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka in the quarters. Those 16 victories propelled her from No.312 in early April to No. 143 just six weeks later. That’s 169 spots in the rankings!
She also became the youngest player to get as far as the round of 16 in the Spanish capital after dismantling No. 49 Leylah Fernandez, No. 14 Beatriz Haddad Maia and No. 19 Magda Linette in that order.
What’s more, Mirra’s run started when she was still 15 years old, and she clinched the record after her 16th birthday on April 29.
What about her sister Erika? Though they’ve garnered less media attention, her performances are equally impressive.
She’s the current No. 147, up from No. 240 a year ago. Even with her fair share of surprise wins this season, she’s 13–14 in 27 matches including qualifying rounds. Her record may not be as stellar as Mirra’s but, like her sister, she also competed in a junior Slam final at RG 2021.
In Madrid, the two teamed up and won their opening match against Nadiia Kichenok and Kimberley Zimmermann, who are both in the Top 70 in doubles, but were eventually expelled by Gabriela Dabrowski and Luisa Stefani.
It’ll be interesting to follow the Andreeva sisters over the coming months, but there’s another pair of sisters who’s more likely to be in the main draw in Montréal.
As far as RG 2023 is concerned, Erika came within one win of qualifying for the main draw this year.
Her younger sister Mirra, however, succeeded, building on her success of 2023. In fact, at 16 years and 26 days, she is the youngest person in the tournament’s history to qualify for the main draw, since a certain …Amélie Mauresmo (15 years and 10 months), twice Grand Slam champion and now director of the major tournament in Paris.
Mirra Andreeva was followed 24 hours later by another teen prodigy, Czech Brenda Fruhvirtova, who qualified for Roland Garros at the age of 16 years and 54 days…
BRENDA AND LINDA
Like the Andreevas, the Fruhvirtovas also competed in doubles in Madrid. Paula Badosa and Bethanie Mattek-Sands ousted them in the first round.
In the past 15 months, Linda, the elder, has risen from No.327 to No.56, in part because she managed to break into the round of 16 in Melbourne and secure her first pro title at the WTA 250 in Chennai last September.
Since then, things have gotten more complicated, and she’s 9–10 in 2023.
Read also: The Rise of Czech Stars on the WTA Tour
Her younger sister Brenda, who’s played fewer matches than expected, is 8–4, including the winner’s trophy she took home from the W40 in Bangalore in March. Over the past year, she’s moved up from No. 391 to No. 146.
Fans have always loved tennis siblings. Are the Fruhvirtovas and Andreevas in it for the long haul? Only time will tell.
Still, even if they achieve a quarter of what the most famous tennis siblings have accomplished, they’re likely to be pretty satisfied with their careers.
Read also: Amanda Anisimova Takes a Mental Timeout
In addition to Venus and Serena Williams, several families have left their mark on the sport. Here are just a few.
- Maleeva: Manuela, Magdalena and Katerina
- Pliskova: Karolina and Krystina
- Radwanska: Agnieszka and Urszula
- McEnroe: John and Patrick
- Bryan: Mike and Bob
- Zverev: Misha and Sasha
- Murray: Andy and Jamie
- Gullickson: Tim and Tom
- Sanchez: Arantxa, Marisa, Emilio and Javier
- Safin(a): Dinara and Marat
- Black: Byron, Wayne and Cara
- Austin: Tracy and John
ROME OPEN CITY
There are days when everything goes wrong, and there are days when everything goes positively swimmingly.
That’s probably how Elena Rybakina felt at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia last week as she breezed through what may have been the easiest draw ever at such an important tournament.
Besides her first-round bye, the seventh seed saw three of her four rivals bow out in the middle of their matches due to injury, including Anhelina Kalinina who retired from the final in tears (6-4, 1-0).
When all was said and done, Elena played 99 games in six matches for an average of 16.5 games per match. That’s equivalent to 6-2, 6-2 wins.
Even so, that doesn’t take anything away from what she achieved, since those odds are almost the same as a winning lottery ticket’s (even if injuries are more common than your loved ones’ birthdates in the 6/49 draw).
I’d even go as far as to call it fair compensation for a fantastic player who was deprived of 2,000 points last summer when her Wimbledon title came with only the Venus Rosewater Dish. If she’d have cashed in her points, she would have soared to No.6 and moved ahead of Aryna Sabalenka who was forced to miss the Slam.
In Rome, all Rybakina could do was continue to demonstrate her talent. And that’s exactly what she did.
The WTA 1000 title makes her World No.4, and her 5,090 points put her just a few steps behind No.3 Jessica Pegula.
So don’t be surprised if Elena Rybakina descends on the National Bank Open as a card-carrying member of the Top 3.