NEWPORT BEACH, CA, USA - Canada has a new top-ranked player.
Eighteen-year-old Bianca Andreescu rallied from being bageled in the first set to defeat American Jessica Pegula in the final of the Newport Beach WTA 125K event on Sunday, 0-6, 6-4, 6-2, and with the victory, will displace Eugenie Bouchard as the No.1 female player from Canada.
"I tried to calm myself down because I was getting really annoyed with myself in that first set, and I have give credit to Jessica because she played really well," said Andreescu, who is set to rise into the Top 70 as a result.
"I tried to leave that set behind and focus on the next and I think I stayed in the present moment throughout the second and third set after that.
"These are the matches I live for. These are the ones that mean the most."
Have a look at your Oracle Challenger Series Newport Beach Women's Singles Champ, Bianca Andreescu!
She upends Jessica Pegula in a 0-6, 6-4, 6-2 thriller on center court.
Congratulations to @TennisCanada member @Bandreescu_!#RoadtoIndianWells pic.twitter.com/H8Mm0Yweh9
— Oracle Challenger Series (@OracleChallngrs) January 27, 2019
After an opening set in which she served five double faults and won just four points on return, Andreescu slowly started to work her way into the match.
Despite moving ahead by an early break in the second set, the Canadian was two games away from defeat as Pegula broke her to 15 in the eighth game of the second set.
Nonetheless, the teenager responded with an emphatic game to break once more, and held to love for the first time in the match to send the championship to a decider.
The final set saw four breaks in the first five games, but it was Andreescu who captured three of them en route to claiming the biggest title of her young career.
"I tried to just stay in the present moment and let go of my shots more," said Andreescu. "I think when I do that I play my best tennis.
"The momentum really started to shift [in the third set] when I broke her at 2-all and went up to 3-2 because then I was serving, and got that 4-2 lead which made a big difference.
"I want to just keep things going. I just feel like a lot is clicking for me so hopefully I can just keep the same routines and work through the challenges."
Andreescu had previously beaten Bouchard on the road to her title, dropping just two games against her elder compatriot in the quarterfinals.