Canadian Bianca Andreescu’s win streak comes to an end with loss to Osaka

Naomi Osaka, 21, had her 10th and final ace on her third match point to prevail

After a thrilling quarterfinal at the China Open, Bianca Andreescu and Naomi Osaka embraced at the net and exchanged compliments.

It could be the first of many similar moments between two of the top players in women’s tennis.

Canada’s Andreescu finally saw her WTA Tour season-high win streak of 17 matches come to an end with a 5-7, 6-3, 6-4 loss to Japan’s Osaka on Friday.

“I just told her that she was an amazing player. She said ‘same’ and that we’ll play again multiple times, which I hope doesn’t happen,” Osaka said with a chuckle when asked about her chat with Andreescu at the net after their first career meeting.

Osaka, ranked fourth in the world, fought back from a break down in both the second and third sets to end three streaks for the sixth-ranked Andreescu, a 19-year-old from Mississauga, Ont.

Along with the win run ending, Andreescu suffered her first loss in nine matches this season against a top-10 opponent and saw her streak of 13 consecutive wins in three-set matches halted.

“For me, it was really stressful,” Osaka, 21, said of a match that lasted almost two hours 15 minutes.

“I’m glad it was entertaining for everyone. Playing against her for the first time was really special. I think that it kind of lived up to the hype.”

Osaka, 21, had her 10th and final ace on her third match point to prevail.

READ MORE: Andreescu wins second-round match at China Open, 16th match in a row

The Andreescu-Osaka match featured the winners of the past three hard-court Grand Slams — the 19-year-old from Mississauga, Ont., won this year’s U.S. Open, while Osaka won the 2019 Australian Open and the 2018 U.S. Open.

“For me I just kept telling myself to fight and I’ll have the opportunities,” Osaka said. “Thankfully, that’s what happened.”

Osaka will face No. 16 seed/defending champion Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark in the semifinals of the US$8.285 million China Open on Saturday.

The other semifinal of the WTA Premier-Mandatory event pits top-ranked Ash Barty of Australia against No. 8 seed Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands.

Barty reached the semifinals in the draw by beating Petra Kvitova 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.

“From my opinion, that was one of the highest quality matches I played all year,” said Barty, the French Open champion. “Petra always has a way of bringing out the best in me, she really does.”

Barty converted three of her six break points while Kvitova, a two-time Wimbledon champion, was two for seven.

Bertens defeated Elina Svitolina 7-6 (6), 6-2.

“I think this week I played some better tennis again,” said Bertens, who amassed 36 winners to Svitolina’s 16. “I think then with some pressure and playing better all the time, it’s good for me. It says for myself that I was growing a lot over the last few years.”

Andreescu’s ranking could be fourth (which would be an all-time high for a Canadian woman), fifth or sixth next week, depending on how the tournament plays out.

If Osaka wins her semi, Andreescu would be no better than fifth next week. If Osaka prevails in the semi and Bertens wins the tournament, Andreescu would stay at No. 6.

On the men’s side, Andy Murray’s run at the China Open is over.

The former No. 1, who had won consecutive singles matches for the first time since undergoing hip surgery in January, lost to top-seeded Dominic Thiem 6-2, 7-6 (3) Friday in the quarterfinals.

Thiem broke the 32-year-old Murray in the first game of the match, but the British player made things more difficult in the second set, testing his younger opponent’s nerve in finishing out the match.

Also, Karen Khachanov beat Fabio Fognini 3-6, 6-3, 6-1.

— with files from The Associated Press

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Surrey Police to work with integrated teams during transition from RCMP

Terry Waterhouse says new police force will ‘collaborate’ with RCMP to maintain continuity of investigations

Solicitor General has ‘no illusions’ about acrimony over Surrey’s police transition

Farnworth wants report released to public ‘a week this coming Tuesday’

Dubai-based company buys Fraser Surrey Docks

Company also has ports and terminals in Vancouver, Nanaimo, Prince Rupert

OUR VIEW: Surrey politicians’ absence speaks volumes

Nobody wants their input to be met with silence or indifference

Delta Hockey Academy wins WHL U.S. Challenge Cup

Canadian youth teams dominated the inaugural tournament last weekend in Kent, Wash.

Clothing, jewelry, purses: RCMP ask court about disposal of evidence in Robert Pickton case

Pickton was sentenced to life with no chance of parole for 25 years for the murders of six women

Ryan nets hat trick in return as Senators beat Canucks 5-2

Ottawa winger received assistance for admitted alcohol problem

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs meet with provincial, federal ministers

Neither party speaking on the groundwork laid for tomorrow’s talks

Speaker ‘will not tolerate illegal activity’ on B.C. legislature grounds, says chief of staff

Chief of staff to the B.C. speaker Alan Mullen says situation with demonstrators appears ‘fluid’

MPs to examine privacy implications of facial-recognition technology used by RCMP

The MPs will look at how the technology affects the privacy, security and safety of children

Dates back to 2009: Calgary police lay charges in fraud involving semi-trucks

Three people from Calgary are facing charges that include fraud over $5,000

Aspiring entrepreneurs invited to pitch ideas at Dragons’ Den auditions

Abbotsford and Vancouver the only Lower Mainland try-out locations

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs optimistic ahead of talks with feds, province

Discussions with provincial and federal governments expected to start later today

Most Read