Canadian Leylah Annie Fernandez wins first-round match at French Open

Leylah Annie Fernandez defeated Anastasia Potapova in straight sets to advance to the second round of the French Open.

PARIS -- It was a triumphant start to the French Open for Canadian Leylah Annie Fernandez.

Fernandez, of Laval, Que., earned an emphatic 6-2, 6-1 win over Anastasia Potapova of Russia in the first round of the women's singles draw Sunday. The Canadian needed just 59 minutes to register the decision.

Fernandez, 18, never surrendered control of the match, registering five service breaks. The 2019 French Open junior champion also won 74 per cent of her service points while Potapova committed 20 unforced errors in the contest.

Fernandez's dominant victory came after Canadian Milos Raonic withdrew from the tournament. Raonic, from Thornhill, Ont., made the decision just before the main draw for the clay-court Grand Slam started.

The Canadian has not played in the French Open since 2017.

Clay traditionally is not Raonic's preferred surface. He did not play in any of the clay-court events leading up to the French Open this year.

The No. 17 seed was replaced in the draw by lucky loser Francisco Cerundolo of Argentina.

The withdrawal leaves three Canadians in the main singles draws -- Fernandez, Felix Auger-Aliassime of Montreal and Bianca Andreescu of Mississauga, Ont.

Andreescu faces Tamara Zidansek of Slovenia on Monday.

When submitting content, please abide by our  submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.
We use cookies to improve your experience. Learn More or change your cookie preferences. By continuing to use this site, you agree to the use of cookies.