Canadian tennis player Bianca Andreescu defeated Russia’s Liudmila Samsonova 7-6(1), 4-6, 6-2 in the first round of the San Diego Open, here.

Samsonova came into San Diego on a red-hot tear with three wins in her past four tournaments, including her most recent run to the title at the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo.

“The match was very tight and it could have gone either way. I felt towards the end I felt I was putting a little bit more pressure than she was and I was a little bit more consistent,” Andreescu said after her win on Monday night.

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Playing her first tournament since making the third round of the US Open, Andreescu kept the pressure on Samsonova’s service games, generating 15 break points in the match and breaking five times.

The 22-year-old Andreescu led by a set and a break before Samsonova powered through to force a third. Andreescu broke for an early 2-0 lead and held on to win after 2 hours and 38 minutes. The victory sets up a potential second-round showdown with Coco Gauff. The American will face Robin Montgomery in her opener on Tuesday.

Andreescu’s opening win validates her decision to skip the overseas events after the U.S Open to focus on her own wellness and training.

“After the U.S Open, I took a few days, maybe a week in Costa Rica, my happy place. I didn’t play any tournaments, I’ve just been training,” Andreescu told WTA Insider.

“I just wanted to have a longer pre-season in a way, instead of just playing tournaments. I wanted to get some good training in because this summer was a little bit all over the place, with my back and some other things. So I didn’t want to go all the way to Europe and then come back here because the goal is to play Guadalajara and I didn’t want to do too much travelling,” she added.

Andreescu initially took a wild card into qualifying in San Diego before withdrawals boosted her into the main draw.

In addition to San Diego, she will play the WTA 1000 in Guadalajara as well as the WTA 125 in Tampico during the week of the WTA Finals. From there, she will finish her season by representing Canada in the Billie Jean King Cup in November.

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By Dipak

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