Lefties in Paris: Leylah Fernandez vs Petra Kvitova

Leylah Fernandez is into the third round of a Grand Slam for the first time. The lefty from Montreal who turn 18 just a few weeks ago continues to impress on the tour despite limited opportunities.

The teenager who is ranked just inside the top 100 has seen off some tricky players in 31st seed Linette and now Polona Hercog to make the third round.

I watched quite a bit of Leylah earlier on in the year in Acapulco where she made the final but lost to Heather Watson.

Despite a year of limited opportunities we have seen Leylah go from outside the top 200 to at least top 90 once her Roland Garros journey comes to an end but it isn’t over yet. Standing in her way of a place in the fourth round is another left handed player in Petra Kvitova.

It isn’t often a two time major champion isn’t seen as a contender especially someone of Petra’s skill but consistency is a big problem. It just doesn’t happen for Petra in Paris, she was a semi-finalist in 2012 but in four of the last six years has gone out in the third round.

The good news for Petra is the draws are opening up and the conditions and this heavy ball play into her hands. It has been like watching at times the ball come through to the court soo slow and heavy it suits those baseline players but also we’ve seen drop shot galore in the tournament as the ball just drops.

Leylah’s game impresses me greatly! There are a group of teenagers in tennis that play without fear and play their way and Leylah is one of them. The power she creates from her forehand in particular is scary, the injection of pace is unpredictable and ruthless.

I wrote about Leylah’s game earlier on in the year and you can read more on it below and I wouldn’t rule out another win in Paris.

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