French Open wonderkid, 17, fights back tears after pulling off Aryna Sabalenka upset | Tennis | Sport

Mirra Andreeva fought back tears as she overcame Aryna Sabalenka at the French Open. The 17-year-old is the youngest woman to reach a Grand Slam semi-final since Martina Hingis in 1997.

Andreeva, ranked 30th in the world, completed a 6-7 6-4 6-4 victory with a stunning lob. She immediately looked up to her team and was visibly emotional.

Holding back tears in her on-court interview, Andreeva revealed that she tried to forget about the score match point. She added that her game plan was thrown out of the window but the performance was enough to seal an historic Roland Garros triumph.

“I even forgot what was the score… When it was the second match point for me, I tried to imagine I was saving a break point. I tried to play brave. And I managed to win,” Andreeva told Eurosport.

“I don’t even have a plan….Me and my coach, we had a plan today, but again I didn’t remember anything during the match.”

Interviewer Mats Wilander quipped that Andreeva does not need new coach Conchita Martinez.

“No I still need her,” the Russian responded while laughing. “She’s giving me great support. Sometimes I can remember a little information.

“Having her by my side is an amazing advantage for me. I’m really happy she still works with me.”

Andreeva will face Italian 12th-seed Jasmine Paolini in her semi-final tie. She defeated Paolini in straight sets at the Madrid Open last month.

“I played her in Madrid. It was really tough mentally and game wise,” Andreeva said. “She plays really fast and moves really fast. She goes for it. Doesn’t matter what the situation or score is.

“It’ll be a bit like today. I’ll try to play the same level and with the same cool head. We’ll see what will happen.”

Andreeva has beaten Emina Bektas, Victoria Azarenka, Peyton Stearns, Varvara Gracheva and now Sabalenka to reach the French Open semi-final. It comes almost a year after she burst onto the scene at Wimbledon by reaching the fourth round having only recently turned 16.

Remarkably, Andreeva was due back on court at Roland Garros at 7pm for her doubles match alongside partner Vera Zvonareva. The duo face Marta Kostyuk and Elena-Gabriela Ruse in the quarter-final this evening.


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