Even in Leylah Fernandez’s youth, many saw signs of her future tennis stardom – MONTREALINABOX

As a young girl, Leylah Fernandez first dreamed of becoming a soccer player, just like her father. But he had other ideas.

“I don’t believe a child should go into a sport because her parents are in it,” Jorge Fernandez said. “I want it to belong to her.”

A little more than a decade after picking up a racquet, Fernandez, 19, has convincingly laid claim to tennis, preparing to compete in the U.S. Open semifinals, the most important match of her career to date.

She took New York by storm and by surprise by defeating defending champion Naomi Osaka and former world No. 1 Angelique Kerber. Her semifinal victory over Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus secured her shot at a Grand Slam title.

Montrealers who know her from her childhood say it was a long time coming.

The rising tennis star had to overcome pushback on her home turf long before getting her shot at a match in Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Fernandez, centre, and her family moved from Quebec to Florida to help her career. (Leylah Fernandez/Instagram)

Superstar potential

As a budding tennis player, she learned the sting of rejection early in her career…


Even in Leylah Fernandez’s youth, many saw signs of her future tennis stardom – MONTREALINABOX – Source

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