Salem Radio Network News Saturday, September 30, 2023


Tennis-Cool teenager Andreeva not fazed by big stage, only when sister plays

By Karolos Grohmann

PARIS (Reuters) – Russian teenager Mirra Andreeva has been as cool as ice, cruising through three qualifying rounds and her first round match against Alison Riske-Amritraj at the French Open on Tuesday without dropping a set.

While the 16-year-old has taken to the tour like a fish to water this year, her nerves are only frayed when her older sister Erika, 18, is in action. The older Andreeva, a lucky loser, starts her own main draw campaign later on Tuesday.

“I don’t know. I just play,” Mirra Andreeva said after her maiden Grand Slam main draw victory. “I just don’t think about it. I just try to enjoy every moment here. I’m just practising and live my life, and that’s it. I just do my things.”

Andreeva made headlines in April after becoming the third-youngest player, aged 15 at the time, to win a main draw match at a WTA 1000 event by stunning 2021 U.S. Open finalist Leylah Fernandez 6-3 6-4 in the opening round of the Madrid Open.

In Paris the teenager dropped just seven games in total in her first two qualifiers and also won the third in straight sets before claiming her first Grand Slam win 6-2 6-1 over former world number 18 Riske-Amritraj on Tuesday.

“Of course, it feels amazing for me,” she said. I’m really excited that I managed to win this match after passing the qualifiers draw. So, of course, I’m really happy, and I’m looking forward to playing the next round.”

But when it comes to her sister, Andreeva is rattled.

“Yes, for sure, for sure. I’m really nervous when she plays,” she said.

Andreeva also made headlines recently after calling three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray beautiful with the Briton jokingly responding that she should get her eyes checked.

The pair have been in touch since.

“After he won a challenger (earlier in May), I texted him,” she said. “I said, ‘Congratulations’. He actually answered me, so I was really happy about it.

“He said, Thank you, and good luck at Roland Garros,” she said. “Maybe that’s why I’m playing that good now.”

(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Ken Ferris)


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