Swiss teen follows in mentor Hingis' footsteps

Last updated 18:04 01/09/2014
Belinda Bencic
Reuters
TEEN SENSATION: Swiss 17-year-old Belinda Bencic is the youngest US Open quarterfinalist since mentor Martina Hingis achieved the feat as a 16-year-old in 1997.

Relevant offers

Tennis

Novak Djokovic, Kei Nishikori and Milos Raonic reach last 16 at the Miami Open Tennis legend John McEnroe to call his own lines against American rival James Blake Rafael Nadal worries he is losing his mental edge Rafa Nadal knocked out of Miami Open by Spanish compatriot Fernando Verdasco Andy Murray closes in on 500th ATP Tour win Women's tennis will survive after Serena - WTA boss Serena Williams hopes to manage pain while 'going for it' in Miami South Korean Chung Hyeon gets maiden ATP Tour-level win; Sock advances in Miami Victoria Azarenka through at Miami to face Jelena Jankovic Simona Halep not holding breath for ever claiming No 1 spot

With mentor Martina Hingis cheering from the stands, 17-year-old Belinda Bencic became the youngest US Open quarterfinalist since Hingis herself in 1997.

Playing on Arthur Ashe Stadium, ninth-seeded Jelena Jankovic was far more rattled than an opponent 12 years her junior.

Bencic won 7-6 (6), 6-3 on Monday.

''I think she had all the pressure because she needed to win,'' Bencic said. ''I could just enjoy.''

Bencic saved three set points in the first, as Jankovic twice failed to serve out the set.

She is the youngest player to reach a Grand Slam quarterfinal since Nicole Vaidisova at the 2006 French Open.

Hingis was 16 when she won the US Open in 1997 - Bencic was six months old at the time.

Hingis' mother, Melanie Molitor, coaches Bencic.

Before the match, Hingis gave Bencic some advice on how to play Jankovic.

''She told me to hold the rallies,'' Bencic said. ''I have to be aggressive. I had to pay attention to her backhand down the line. ... So I tried to push it to her forehand.''

She next faces China's Peng Shuai, another unseeded player making her major quarterfinal debut, for a spot in the semis.

The difference is that Peng is 28 years old. The 58th-ranked Swiss teen has now defeated top-10 players in consecutive matches after upsetting sixth-seeded Angelique Kerber in the third round.

Ad Feedback

- AP

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content