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Leylah Fernandez Serena Williams combo

Leylah Fernandez: ‘I want to face Serena before she retires’

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Leylah Fernandez will return to action from a foot injury at the North American hard court swing, now with the possibility of facing Serena Williams. 

After Serena exited Wimbledon in the first round, fans worried they had seen the last of the great champion.

However, the 23-time Slam champion immediately told press that she was motivated to continue playing tournaments.

“I was very excited,” Leylah Fernandez, 19, told TSN of Serena’s return. “Tennis has missed her. She’s a big legend.

“Just seeing her back on court, competing and giving it her all and not giving up is a true inspiration. I know that kids and professional players are looking up to her.”

Serena has committed to the Canadian Open at the start of August and is on the entry list for the subsequent Cincinnati Open, which suggests she is planning a 21st US Open appearance.

Incredibly, Serena made her first main draw appearance in New York back in 1998, aged just 17, four years before Fernandez was even born.

The 2021 US Open finalist added: “Hopefully I can share the court with her before she retires, hopefully [she won’t retire] too soon. Hopefully I can play a match against her.

“I just want to be able to tell everyone that I was able to play a match against Serena Williams. She’s just legend.”

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