Leylah Annie Fernandez is a star. The entire world is taking notice.
Fernandez won a third-set tiebreak to upset No. 5 seed Elina Svitolina 6-3, 3-6, 7-6(5) in the US Open quarter-finals on Tuesday.
The 19-year-old Canadian is the youngest woman to reach the semifinals at the US Open since Maria Sharapova did it at 18 in 2005.
She is the third woman in the Open Era to defeat a pair of top-five seeds en route to the US Open semifinals.
A 300-to-1 long shot to win the US Open before the tournament started, Fernandez is now +550 to win the women’s singles title.
Here is the Morning Coffee for Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2021.
Fernandez continues to defy the odds
Fernandez is just the third Canadian woman in the Open Era to reach the semifinals at the US Open, joining Carling Bassett-Seguso (1984) and Bianca Andreescu (2019).
If we were to judge it simply based on the numbers, her win over Svitolina was technically only the third largest upset Fernandez has pulled off during her Cinderella run.
Fernandez ended Svitolina’s nine-match win streak as a +230 underdog.
She knocked out the defending US Open champion Naomi Osaka in the third round as a +370 underdog.
Then she eliminated the 2016 US Open champion Angelique Kerber at +260 on the money line.
If you bet $100 on Fernandez to win her first-round match versus Ana Konjuh, then carried over and risked the total payout betting on the Canadian to win every match since, you would have made a profit of $21,586.79 to this point.
Next up for Fernandez, a date with the current betting favourite to win the women’s singles title in the second-seeded Aryna Sabalenka.
Sabalenka opened -430 on the money line. The comeback on Fernandez is +320.
Can Fernandez pull off one more upset to reach the final?
Thursday can’t get here soon enough.
Fernandez isn’t the only Canadian who will be in action at the US Open on Thursday.
Felix Auger-Aliassime will face Daniil Medvedev in the men’s singles semifinals.
Auger-Aliassime advanced to the semis after his quarter-final opponent, Carlos Alcaraz, retired with an injury.
He’s the first Canadian man to reach the semifinals in US Open singles.
Auger-Aliassime was 50-to-1 to win the men’s singles title at the start of the tournament.
He’s down to 25-to-1, with a tough road still in front of him. Novak Djokovic is expected to be waiting for him in the final if he gets past Medvedev.
Medvedev opened -670 to advance to the final. Auger-Aliassime is +470 on the money line.
Happy NFL kickoff eve
The Thursday schedule is going to be absolutely loaded on the network.
Fernandez and Auger-Aliassime will be competing in the US Open semifinals, plus we’ll get the NFL regular-season kickoff.
The defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers opened as a 6.5-point favourite against the Dallas Cowboys when the lines were first posted all the way back in May.
That number is up to Tampa Bay -8 at most books.
Luke Bellus has done an excellent job getting us ready for the season’s arrival with a look at one future to consider for every division.
In his NFC South preview, he made his prediction for the Bucs’ season win total, which is set at 11.5.
While all eyes will be on Tom Brady to see what he has left in the tank this season at 44 years old, a couple of rookie quarterbacks are set to make their NFL debuts in Week 1.
Davis Sanchez weighed in on the Rookie of the Year futures market and gave his pick for which of the five quarterbacks selected in the first round of the NFL Draft has the best chance to win the award.
Blue Jays win streak reaches 7
It didn’t look like the Toronto Blue Jays would have what it takes to make a run at the American League Wild Card after a stretch in which they went 6-11 from Aug. 10 through Aug. 27.
They’ve been lights out ever since.
The Blue Jays (+210) beat the New York Yankees 5-1 on Tuesday night to extend their win streak to six in a row.
Toronto has won nine of its past 10 since that 6-11 stretch and is now just two games back of the AL Wild Card.
Gerrit Cole got the start for the Yankees on Tuesday night but left after just 3 2/3 innings because of hamstring tightness.
New York’s starting pitchers have been solid since the All-Star Break but losing the AL Cy Young award favourite heading into the final stretch could make clinching a playoff spot a little more difficult for the Yankees with the Blue Jays and the Boston Red Sox right behind them in the standings.
The AL East rivals are right back at it tonight for the third of three games in the Bronx.
The Yankees are currently -125 on the money line with Luis Gil scheduled to start. The Blue Jays are +110 sending Alek Manoah to the mound.