WATCH: Aryna Sabalenka Completely Destroys Tennis Racquet During US Open 2021 Semifinals Against Leylah Fernandez

Published 09/09/2021, 9:03 PM EDT
Sep 9, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus reacts after losing a point against Leylah Fernandez of Canada (not pictured) on day eleven of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports


Following many upsets and some spectacular tennis, the US Open 2021 reached the semifinal stage. Remarkably, in the first women’s singles match, the second seed Aryna Sabalenka faced the inspired 19-year-old Leylah Fernandez. And as expected, they exhibited their best tennis inside the Arthur Ashe Stadium. Eventually, the teenager came through in the opening set 7-6 (3) and left Sabalenka frustrated.

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Undeniably, it was the biggest match of their young careers so far. Although Sabalenka had also reached the Wimbledon semifinals this year, she had a better chance to make it into her maiden Grand Slam final against the teenager.

As for Leylah, she had shown great heart and caused the most upsets in New York. However, overcoming the powerful Belarusian was a massive challenge on its own.

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Incredibly, after winning the opening set and then recovering from a 0-2 deficit in the second, Fernandez pushed her opponent’s nerves. As a result, Sabalenka vented all out on her tennis racquet, smashing it into smithereens.

Aryna Sabalenka vs Leylah Fernandez, Set 1: US Open 2021 SFs

In the opening set, the 23-year-old Belarusian, Aryna Sabalenka, outmatched the Canadian Leylah Fernandez with her hard-hitting groundstrokes. Besides, she made it all seem utterly easy.

Sep 9, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus reacts after winning a point against Leylah Fernandez of Canada (not pictured) on day eleven of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports

However, after losing her serve, the teenager got more into the rhythm of the heavy-hitting. Consequently, from 3-0 down in the first set, Fernandez then served for 4-4.

Following that, Fernandez saved a set point and enforced a first set tie-breaker. Afterward, a misjudged overhand from Sabalenka and her third doubt fault gave the teenager the opening set, 7-6 (3). Also, Fernandez maintained her clean record in the tiebreakers in New York.

Sabalenka vs Fernandez, Set 2: US Open 2021 SFs

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After the first set blunder, Sabalenka got composed and registered an early 0-2 lead again in the second set. Nevertheless, the in-control Fernandez continued to return well and recovered the loss immediately.

Sep 9, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Leylah Fernandez of Canada reacts after winning a point against Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus (not pictured) on day eleven of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Furthermore, the duo engaged in getting the crowd on their feet. However, tennis-wise, the teenager seemed more mentally in the battle than her aggressive but frustrated opponent.

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At 4-4, Sabalenka directed her energies in the right direction and got the crucial break. Conclusively, she leveled the match at 7-6 (3), 4-6 after comfortably serving for the set. Who will win the final set and play for the US Open 2021 title?

Watch this story: Serena Williams, Pete Sampras, and Others Who Made History at US Open as Teenagers

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Purav Joshi

1118 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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