Bianca Andreescu. Photograph:( AFP )
Serena called for a medical timeout, but within a minute, the umpire announced she was retiring
Canadian teenager Bianca Andreescu won the Rogers Cup title after her opponent and former world number one Serena Williams was forced to retire in the final with a back injury on Sunday.
More than winning, the 19-year-old earned praises for consoling Serena, who was in tears after the match was brought to a premature end.
During the first set, Serena called for a medical timeout, but within a minute, the umpire announced she was retiring.
Andreescu approached her chair, offering words of encouragement and a consolatory hug as Williams tried to fight back tears.
When Williams sat dejected in her chair, Andreescu, who is no stranger to injury setbacks, went over to console her. The pair embraced and had a heartfelt conversation.
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Andreescu, who was competing this week for the first time since withdrawing from the French Open with a shoulder injury, told Serena that "I know all about injuries".
"I feel like a million bucks! No pun intended, but no, seriously, it's not the way I wanted to win," said Andreescu during the post-match presentation.
"It's not easy for an athlete to pull out, especially in a final, in the final round, but I know she's gonna bounce back really quick, she's an incredible athlete and I wish her the fastest recovery," she added.
Serena was full of praises for the young Canadian, who won her first WTA title at Indian Wells in March.
Twitter users also praised Bianca's gesture.
Hey sania Bianca andrescu won it was 3-1 and Serena had back spasms and had to withdraw— Dado (@Dado3615) August 11, 2019
What a class act from Bianca Andreescu I will start to follow her career. Little gestures like this go a long way. Serena will be back for sure. She loves tennis.— junior (@junior4run) August 12, 2019
Andreescu is the first Canadian to win the Rogers Cup women's singles title since 1969.