Miami (USA), March 23 (IANS) In a matchup of former US Open champions, Bianca Andreescu edged Emma Raducanu in the first round of the Miami Open, here.
Andreescu knocked off Raducanu 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 in 2 hours and 33 minutes on Wednesday night.
Andreescu, the 2021 finalist here, won their first-round match in Rome last year after Raducanu retired trailing 6-2, 2-1 with a lower back injury. This time round, the opponents went toe-to-toe for three captivating sets.
The 22-year-old Canadian will next take on No.7 seed Maria Sakkari in the second round. She has split two previous meetings with Sakkari, both of which came down to the wire.
Andreescu won 7-6(7), 3-6, 7-6(4) in the 2021 Miami semifinals, but Sakkari got a 6-7(2), 7-6(6), 6-3 win in the fourth round of the US Open a few months later.
“You never know what to expect. I just came in here wanting to play my best with what I had today, and I think I did that. Emma played amazing. She’s an incredible player and I have a lot of respect for her, Andreescu was quoted as saying by WTA.
“I didn’t let my negative emotions get the best of me. I stayed positive, I was very energetic and I never gave up,” she added.
Notably, there are similarities between Andreescu and Raducanu. Both were born in Toronto and have Romanian heritage and both won the US Open as teenagers in their tournament debut. Since then, after struggling with injuries and inconsistency, both entered the Miami Open as unseeded first-round opponents.