Canada reached their first ever Billie Jean King Cup final after they beat the Czech Republic in the last four of the competition at the Estadio de la Cartuja in Seville, Spain on Saturday, 10 November 2023.
It was Leylah Fernandez who lead the Canadian charge but she was also backed up well by her teammates Marina Stakusic, Rebecca Marino, Eugenie Boucard and Gabriela Dabrowski.
They will now face Italy for their shot at the title later on Sunday.
Canadian teenage sensation Marina Stakusic lost her singles match 6-2; 6-1 to Barbora Krejcikova.
Fernandez got Canada back on the winning track as she fought hard to beat Marketa Vandrousova 6-2; 2-6; 6-3.
Then Fernandez teamed up with Gabriela Dabrowski to win their doubles match 7-5; 7-6 over Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova.
“I’m just ecstatic,” Fernandez told billiejeankingcup.com. “I am extremely proud of our team spirit and effort. It was one of our toughest ties because we were playing one of the best players in the world individually and the best team in the world.
“It was such a tough test for us, but we were super excited about it, motivated and wanted to put on a show. Now, I cannot wait for the final against Italy, who will bring a lot of heart and a lot of grit to the court.Team Canada’s Leylah Fernandez Wins in Two Key BJK Cup Ties
“It’s a final, so we are going to leave it all out there. Hopefully with fingers crossed and if stars align, we can lift the trophy. We are going to bring the same team spirit, work ethic and fight as today.”
Italy Stakes Intent at Title Ambitions
Italy meanwhile, got a 2-0 victory over high-flying Slovenia but despite the runaway win the Italians were made to work for their result.
Martina Trevisan overcame Kaja Juvan 7-6; 6-3, while Jasmine Paolini took three sets to beat Tamara Zidansek 6-2; 4-6; 6-3.
The doubles match between the two teams wasn’t played but Italy’s two singles victories was enough to take them to the final.
“We came three years ago from the very ground and we grow up a little bit every year. This year we came here with all best ranking of my players, so we have to be really happy. The Federation is very happy for what these girls are doing every day, said proud Italy captain Tathiana Garbin told billiejeankingcup.com
“Sometimes it’s not the results, because we judge the players for the results. But I know the hard work they are doing every single day. I’m pushing this, because it’s the mentality I like from them. They have a growing mentality. That’s why we have to promote this mentality for the young kids that want to start this game.
“What they have done it’s something incredible, but as we say the other day, we are not satisfied. We want always to push ourselves to the limit, and we try to dream again tomorrow.”
Photo caption: Canada reached their first ever Billie Jean King Cup final after they beat the Czech Republic in the last four of the competition on at the Estadio de la Cartuja in Seville, Spain on Saturday, 10 November 2023. Photo: BJK Cup on X