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French Open third round: Leylah Fernandez bounces Belinda Bencic

(Robert Prange/Getty Images)

No. 17 seed Leylah Fernandez advanced to the fourth round of the French Open for the first time in her career after defeating No. 14 seed Belinda Bencic 7-5, 3-6, 7-5 Friday.

The two-hour, 49-minute contest was a battle, with Fernandez pulling out the win on the margins, slowly growing into her serve as the match went on.

Friday’s victory lifts the 19-year-old back to the second week of a Grand Slam after her staggering run at last season’s US Open.

Fernandez will face off against clay-court talent Amanda Anisimova in the fourth round at Roland Garros.

Americans No. 18 Coco Gauff and Sloane Stephens also advanced in Paris, with Gauff downing upset expert Kaia Kanepi. The 18-year-old cruised past the Estonian veteran in straight sets, surviving Kanepi after she took out Muguruza in the major’s first round.

“I think that now I feel like mentally I’m in a better place than I was last year, coming into the second week I think sometimes that’s what makes Grand Slams harder is because it is two weeks and there is no other way to prepare for two weeks of playing,” Gauff said.

Stephens also halted an upset run, downing Diane Parry 6-2, 6-3 after the Frenchwoman took out No. 2 Barbora Kerjcikova in the opening round. The 29-year-old moves on to her eighth Round of 16 appearance in Paris, where she will face Jil Teichmann, who bounced No. 15 Victoria Azarenka Friday.

No. 23 seed Teichmann battled back from a set and break down to defeat Azarenka 4-6, 7-5, 7-6 (7-5) in a thrilling three-hour and 18-minute affair. Friday’s victory marks the 24-year-old’s 10th win in her last 12 matches on clay, advancing her to her first Grand Slam Round of 16.