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Canada's Fernandez upsets Zheng, advances to Doha quarterfinals

Canada Leylah Fernandez Leylah Fernandez - The Canadian Press

DOHA, Qatar — Canada's Leylah Fernandez advanced to the quarterfinals of the Qatar Open with a 7-5, 6-3 upset of fifth seed Qinwen Zheng of China on Wednesday.

Fernandez came back from a 5-3 deficit in the first set, then picked up her third break in four chances in the second set and held the rest of the way to win the match in 92 minutes.

It's the first win over a top-10 opponent this year for Fernandez, who was ranked as low as No. 95 in July but entered the week at No. 38.

Fernandez improved to 2-0 in the career series between the 21-year-old Grand Slam finalists.

The Canadian defeated Zheng 6-1, 4-6, 7-6 (3) in the second round of Monterrey 2022 en route to her second of three WTA titles.

Fernandez will next face either No. 3 seed Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan, who advanced with a 6-1, 6-7 (6), 6-4 win over No.16 seed Emma Navarro of the United States.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 14, 2024.