Leylah Fernandez

November 26, 2020

“I started playing tennis on a recreational level. At age 10, I decided to compete and become a professional. My dad was my coach but is new to the tennis world since he was a soccer player. My dad surrounded us with other coaches who understood our philosophy, style and game. I never felt pressure from my dad to play sports or do anything in life. He gave me the green light to make my own decisions and introduced me to many different activities. I played baseball, soccer, volleyball and ran track.  However I loved tennis and once I realized there were Junior Grand Slams, I set a goal to win one. Last year, I reached the Junior Australian Open final and was disappointed to lose. A few months later, I won the Junior French Open and became the first Canadian player in seven years to capture a Junior Grand Slam. This year, I started playing on the WTA Tour.  It is difficult to balance tennis, school, and friends. When I started playing tennis, I was in regular school. I had friends and teachers who supported me but I constantly traveled to compete. I missed moments in my friends’ lives so it

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