Three days before her sixteenth birthday (April 19), tornado Mirra Andreeva won her first major match on Wednesday. As of this time in 2023, the Russian tennis prodigy is still unbeaten in professional tournaments.
“The ball speed is 185 km/h? Are you serious? Wow, that’s unbelievable!”. The Russian girl’s blue eyes sparkled as the professional female tennis player returned to a child with a bunch of hairpins and a pair of choker necklaces with tennis racquets on her neck.
Mirra Andreeva was excited to learn that her first serve was going faster and faster, proportional to her level of squash. On Wednesday, at the 3rd court of the Caja Magica tennis complex, a girl from Krasnoyarsk, Siberia made a makeover.
This world number 194 player competed with Leylah Fernandez (ranked 49) – a player who reached the final of the US Open 2021 – at the Mutua Madrid Open and defeated the opponent with a score of 6-3, 6-4. Less than 24 hours later, she again defeated 13th-ranked Beatriz Haddad Maia with a score of 7-6(6), 6-3 to advance to the third round.
With his win over Fernandez, prodigy Andreeva became the third youngest player to win a main match at the WTA 1000 tournament, after Coco Gauff and CiCi Bellis, and the second 15-year-old to beat his opponent. in the Top 50 at a WTA 1000 tournament.
By beating Beatriz Haddad Maia, she became the seventh youngest player since 2000 to beat a Top 20 opponent before the age of 16. Next, Andreeva will face Marketa Vondrousova or Magda Linette for a place in the round of 16.
At the age of 15, Mirra Andreeva entered the 2023 season through the door for young athletes. But after 3 finals for young athletes, including the Australian Open final, it’s time for her to step up the ladder.
An instant miracle occurred: within 17 days, from Chiasso to Madrid via Bellinzona, she won 14 of 14 matches to win two ITF 60 titles and qualify for Roland-Garros. With her record, Andreeva became the first player to win 2 or more W60 titles before the age of 16 and the winning streak has expanded to 15 matches.
When asked to describe her playstyle, Andreeva was quick to compare it to one of the WTA’s most interesting female tennis players. “I’m pretty good at keeping up the tempo like Ons Jabeur. I also like to play spin, drop the ball and change the rhythm of the game depending on the situation.”
Andreeva’s older sister Erika, 18, is also on the WTA Tour. Along with Fruhvirtovas Linda (17) and Brenda Linda (16), the duo are the latest pair of teenage sisters to rock the league. “Erica started playing tennis when she was 5 years old, and I started playing tennis when I was 2 years old. It’s nice to have a sister to accompany you.”
After deciding to choose tennis for their life, the Andreeva sisters moved from Siberia to Sochi to receive formal training, and then to Cannes (France), where they were coached by top coaches like Jean-René Lisnard and Jean-Christophe Faurel for coaching. Faurel previously coached another prodigy, Coco Gauff.
“I know that my uncle Daniil Medvedev also trained in Cannes, so I decided to practice here instead of going to the Nadal academy from the beginning of 2022,” Andreeva said. Although they practice together at a tennis training center, for many years, the Andreeva sisters have not competed together, even in practice.
The reason is because the coaches have asked the sisters to keep their own fighting style and tactics, in case they encounter in an official match. “Now, it will be interesting if we can play against each other. I really don’t know who will win. Maybe she’ll win because if I’m going to give up, she’ll run 20 seconds ahead because she knows what I’m going to do,” Andreeva.
5 quick questions with Mirra Andreeva
– Why did you choose tennis? Actually, my mother chose. I’m very happy with that choice because tennis is my love. When the coach gave me 5 days off, I did nothing but think about tennis. – What does your first WTA win mean to you? + This victory makes me a lot more confident. – When you come to life, will you still play junior tournaments? + This has WTA’s age regulation already. This year, you continue to play in several junior tournaments, including the Slam – What’s your forte? + Forehand shots. However, lately, I’ve been practicing backhand, especially backhand shots along the sideline. Serving points is also my strength. – How did you feel when you attended WTA 1000 for the first time? + Actually this is my second WTA tournament, but last time was in Monastir, but not many famous players. Here, almost every day I see Andy Murray, Daniil Medvedev…. They greeted me so it was great.