Bianca Andreescu completed her emergence as the latest new star of women’s tennis after a scintillating three-set win over Angelique Kerber in the final of the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells.
The 18-year-old Canadian fought off exhaustion and held her nerve to triumph 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 over the three-time grand-slam champion, becoming the first wildcard winner of the prestigious event.
Andreescu’s explosive attacks and unpredictable shot choices had endeared her to the Indian Wells crowd in a week in which she saw off a series of higher-ranked players including Garbine Muguruza and Elina Svitolina.
And the world number 60 showed few early signs of nerves against Kerber, whom she broke in the opening game of the match before serving out to take the first set.
Eighth seed Kerber began to swing the match her way in the second set as she built on an early break while Andreescu was seen to visibly complain to her coach about fatigue.