Barty lets Coco through, Pliskova to meet Martic

On a wet and dreary Friday at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome, World No 1 Ash Barty retired from her quarter-final match against Coco Gauff, waving on the American teenager into the semis after leading by a set, while Karolina Pliskova survived 3 match...

Nadal avenges Madrid loss

Up to the quarter-final stage of the Rome Masters, Rafa Nadal could be said to have had a fairly torrid time and when he faced Alexander Zverev for a place in the last four, many expected the German, last week’s Madrid Masters winner, to maintain his winning form over...

Pliskova to meet Ostapenko in Rome quarters

Karolina Pliskova is the sole seed in the lower half of the draw and takes on Jelena Ostapenko, the 2017 French Open champion, in the quarter-finals of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia, while Petra Martic and Jessica Pegula will contest the last quarter on Friday.

Barty cruises, Gauff stuns Sabalenka and Svitolina swats Muguruza

World No 1 Ash Barty remains on track to add the Rome title to her expanding collection but must overcome Coco Gauff in the quarter-finals, who upset Aryna Sabalenka, the Madrid champion, at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia on Thursday, while Elina Svitolina took out...

Nadal one point from defeat

Rafa Nadal’s invincibility on clay is being tested more regularly than you would expect and makes his forthcoming challenge at Roland Garros in a few weeks’ time, the more intriguing.

Jo Konta and Venus Williams enter Nottingham

British No 1 Johanna Konta and 10-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams will headline this year’s Nottingham Open field, the first of the returning LTA summer grass court events.

Osaka leads march of seeds out of Rome

On a day of major upsets at the Internazionali BNL d'Italia, the underdogs prevailed, seeing off seeds Naomi Osaka, Simona Halep, Sofia Kenin, Serena Williams, Petra Kvitova, and Maria Sakkari in a procession of upsets at the Foro Italico in Rome.

Nadal back on track

Rafa Nadal, playing his first match at the Foro Italico following his quarter-final loss to Alexander Zverev at last week’s Madrid Masters, declared himself happy with his performance in overcoming Jannik Sinner in straight sets, but not so with the scheduling by the...

Konta follows Bencic and Mertens out of Rome

Seeds started to tumble at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome, with Belinda Bencic and Elise Mertens followed out of the draw by Jo Konta, while Garbiñe Muguruza and Angelique Kerber were among those to win through on Tuesday.

Kvitova, Brady, Swiatek and Sakkari open Rome accounts

The Internazionali BNL d’Italia got under way at the Foro Italico in Rome on Monday, with some of the seeds in action and coming through unscathed, although Petra Kvitova had to come from a set down against Magda Linette to advance, while Jennifer Brady won in...
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Bianca planning on January return

Bianca Andreescu won the US Open in 2019 but has played no competitive matches since the WTA Finals last year in October when she sustained a serious knee injury.

The virus pushed me back, and some little personal things here and there, but right now I’m good, I’m training hard… I’m really looking forward to 2021. I’m perfectly healthy. I really wanted to take time to build everything in my life, and I think this time off helped me do that. Bianca Andreescu

Just before the rescheduled French Open in Paris, the 20-year old announced in September that she would not play the rest of the season as she wanted to focus on her health and training.

“As hard as it was to come to this conclusion, I have so much to look forward to in 2021, including the Olympics,” Andreescu said. “I want to use this time to focus my game so I can come back stronger and better than ever.”

As a junior, Andreescu won the Orange Bowl and two Grand Slam doubles titles with compatriot Carson Branstine en route to reaching a career-best junior ranking of No 3 in the world, and transitioned through the ITF Futures into pro tennis.

After not playing any matches at the WTA Tour level in 2018, other than trying to qualify at the four majors, she had her breakout year in 2019, beginning with a runner-up showing in her first event of the season at the Auckland Open.

The Canadian, however, fully burst into public consciousness when she won her maiden Grand Slam in New York in some style after taking the title at Indian Wells earlier in the season, her first on the WTA Tour, but her short career on court has been blighted by a series of injuries.

Although she missed several months because of injury, Andreescu nevertheless qualified for the WTA Finals at the end of the season, and finished the year ranked No 5 despite having to withdraw after a couple of rounds into the tournament.

Then, at the start of the season, she was also forced to pull out of this year’s Australian Open.

She is determined to bounce back in 2021, saying she is now ‘perfectly healthy’ and ‘feeling good’ after the pandemic put paid to any hopes of a comeback midway through the curtailed season, and adds that the time off has done her good and she is looking forward to next year.

“I wouldn’t say I’m ready tomorrow to play a match, because I’m taking it step by step,” Andreescu said in an interview with Tennis “Maybe in a couple weeks I’ll be good.

“I don’t want to rush anything but I’m feeling good. But I’m waiting for 2021, that’s going to be the year.”

When asked whether she will be ready for the Australian Open, Andreescu responded: “Yes, 100 per cent.

“The virus pushed me back, and some little personal things here and there, but right now I’m good, I’m training hard… I’m really looking forward to 2021.

“I’m perfectly healthy. I really wanted to take time to build everything in my life, and I think this time off helped me do that.”

Andreescu returned to the practice court earlier this week, and she says everything is in place for her to resume her career next year.

Despite her lack of matches, the Canadian has still retained her place in the World’s Top 10 due to the revised WTA ranking system brought about by the coronavirus crisis this year.

Bianca Andreescu's career has been blighted by injuries, the last of which she sustained at the WTA Finals and has kept her out the game for over a year

© Matthew Stockman/Getty Images



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