Emma Raducanu and Leylah Fernandez won their respective semifinal matches Thursday night to set up an all-teenage final at the US Open on Saturday.
The Grand Slam final will be the first between two teenagers since the 1999 US Open, when Serena Williams, then 17 years old, took down 18-year-old Martina Hingis.
Inside Arthur Ashe Stadium on Thursday, Fernandez defeated No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka 7-6, 4-6, 6-4 to reach her first US Open final. The win marked Fernandez’s third over a WTA top-5 opponent in the tournament and her fourth straight three-set victory over a seeded opponent.
🇨🇦 @leylahfernandez IS A GRAND SLAM FINALIST! pic.twitter.com/hK21AC2M8T— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 10, 2021
🇨🇦 @leylahfernandez IS A GRAND SLAM FINALIST! pic.twitter.com/hK21AC2M8T
Meanwhile, Raducanu continued her dominance in New York, defeating Maria Sakkari 6-1, 6-4 in the second match Thursday.
The British teenager has not dropped a set all tournament, and her slimmest margin of defeat in any set has been 6-4.
The point that changed @EmmaRaducanu's life. pic.twitter.com/k65yVd7xMo— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 10, 2021
The point that changed @EmmaRaducanu's life. pic.twitter.com/k65yVd7xMo
Raducanu, 18, is now the youngest Grand Slam finalist since Maria Sharapova won Wimbledon in 2004 at the age of 17. And that’s not the only history Raducanu will make Saturday.
She is the first qualifier, male or female, to reach a Grand Slam final and the youngest British Grand Slam finalist in 62 years. For many young tennis fans, this will be their first time watching a British woman play in a Grand Slam final. The last time it happened was 44 years ago, when Virginia Wade defeated Betty Stove at Wimbledon in 1977.
It’s also the first time a British woman has reached a US Open final in 53 years.
Raducanu and Fernandez have faced each other before on the junior circuit. In the second round of the Wimbledon junior tournament in 2018, Raducanu came out on top.
The meet again in a US Open final for the ages on Saturday at 4:20 p.m. ET.