“Got a Chisel off Both Sides”: Ashleigh Barty Details the Challenges Posed By Bianca Andreescu

Published 04/03/2021, 3:43 AM EDT
Mar 29, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; Ashleigh Barty of Australia reacts after winning the first set against Victoria Azarenka of Belarus (not pictured) in the fourth round in the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


Women’s World Number 1 Ashleigh Barty has spoken highly of resurgent Canadian tennis star Bianca Andreescu, who she will face in the Miami final later on Saturday.

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The Australian recorded a facile 6-3, 6-3 win over Ukrainian Elina Svitolina on Friday to set up a championship showdown with Andreescu.

Ashleigh Barty says her Miami co-finalist Andreescu has the game to beat the very best

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Speaking to reporters after the win, Barty said that though she doesn’t follow too many of her rivals on TV, she has seen enough of the 20-year-old Canadian to know that she can beat the “very best” on her day.

Mar 29, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; Bianca Andreescu of Canada reaches for a forehand against Garbi–e Muguruza of Spain (not pictured) in the fourth round in the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

And the Aussie is spot-on in her assessment as the current World Number 9 fought past the hugely promising Amanda Anisimova of the US, two-time Grand Slam champion Garbine Muguruza and the in-form Maria Sakkari of Greece to seal her passage to the final.

“But Bianca has shown in big tournaments that she’s got the ability to beat the very best,” Barty said.

She added that she’s gathered enough about the Canadian’s style of play to know that “she’s got a way of moving around the court that’s extremely physical”.

Barty, too, came through tough battles with two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka and Belarussian and current World Number 8 Aryna Sabalenka to put herself just a win away from a successful title defense in Miami.

Barty says Bianca Andreescu is equally good with her forehand and backhand

Barty added that Andreescu has got a “great” pair of hands and is as good with her backhand as she is with the forehand, thereby giving herself enough options on both sides of the court.

“She’s got a chisel off both sides and has the ability to flip the ball up or hit through the court,” the 2019 French Open champion said.

Barty added that what makes Andreescu especially tough to beat when she’s going great guns, as she has been in Miami so far, is that she can dip into her repertoire and overwhelm her opponents with the sheer variety of options.

 “She has so many different assets and so many different things that she can go to to ultimately let her competitor in her figure it out,” the Aussie said.

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With the women’s final featuring two stars playing at their very best, expect a lot of thrills and spills as the battle unfolds in Miami on Saturday.

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Priyabrata Chowdhury

860 articles

Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.

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