Fernandez delights home crowd, Giorgi puts on masterclass to dismiss Andreescu
On a jam-packed Tuesday of tennis at the IGA Stadium, fans were treated to the full range of results on the WTA Tour. A returning veteran claiming her first win in over three years, a hometown favourite rising to the challenge, a surprisingly one-sided clash of former champions… It's the stuff we’ve come to love about tennis in an era where each player is pushing the other to be better.
Opening the day on Court Central was the returning veteran: Caroline Wozniacki. The Dane, a former World No. 1 and champion here in Montreal, was lucky to have a dream match-up against a qualifier for her first match since giving birth to two children – and she was up to the task. Wozniacki showed little signs of rust in dispatching Kimberly Birrell of Australia, 6-2, 6-2 to kick off her professional comeback.
In the day session’s second feature match, Leylah Fernandez returned to her home town of Montreal as top billed player, with many local fans eager to see the player they watched at the 2021 US Open start a run here in Montreal. She got her tournament off to quite the start too, dispatching Peyton Stearns – who beat her earlier this year in Morrocco – 6-2, 6-3.
Around the grounds, matches mostly went the way of the players of greater pedigree, with Wimbledon champ Marketa Vondrousova, last year’s Toronto runner-up Beatriz Haddad Maia and recent French Open finalist Karolina Muchova all winning in straight sets.
The night sessions featured a blockbuster clash between former champs Bianca Andreescu (2019) and Camila Giorgi (2021), with the Canadian favoured following strong summer results in Paris and London in addition to playing in front of a partisan Montreal crowd. It was Giorgi, however, who would summon her tournament-winning form, completely blitzing Andreescu and smothering any momentum against her with crowd-silencing winners off both wings to win 6-3, 6-2.
A disappointing result for Andreescu, surely, but the Canadian remained classy in defeat, signing handfuls of autographs for young fans waiting for her as she exited the stadium.
The biggest upset of the day – by ranking, at least – came at the hands of Marie Bouzkova, a National Bank Open semi-finalist back in 2019 in Toronto. The Czech counterpuncher out-duelled No. 5 seed Caroline Garcia from the baseline to prevail 6-4, 4-6, 6-2 on Court Rogers.