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Canada’s Fernandez to skip Billie Jean King Cup Finals

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TORONTO, Oct 14 (Reuters) – U.S. Open finalist Leylah Fernandez has determined not to characterize Canada at subsequent month’s Billie Jean King Cup Finals in Prague, Tennis Canada mentioned on Thursday.

The 19-year-old Fernandez, who went out within the final 16 at Indian Wells this week in her first event since dropping to fellow teenager Emma Raducanu of Britain within the U.S. Open last, will likely be changed by Carol Zhao.

“It has always been an honor to represent my country,” world quantity 28 Fernandez mentioned in a news launch. “Canada has given me and my family so much opportunity and in the last few weeks, the Canadian support has meant the world to me.

“After consideration, I’ve made the choice to not play the BJK Cup Finals. I want my staff all the perfect this November!”

Fernandez has enjoyed a breakout season during which she won the Monterrey Open in March for her first WTA title.

She upped her game considerably at the year’s final Grand Slam in New York where her run to the final included wins over defending champion Naomi Osaka, three-times Grand Slam winner Angelique Kerber and world number two Aryna Sabalenka.

Following her loss at Indian Wells, Fernandez said it had been a long season and that she was unsure of her playing plans for the rest of the year and needed to meet with her team and see where she was mentally and physically.

“It has been an extended season and we perceive her resolution,” said interim Team Canada captain Sylvain Bruneau.

“That mentioned, we’re delighted to find a way to welcome Carol onto the staff for the Finals. Carol has proven from her previous experiences that she is a superb staff participant. She will likely be a really beneficial addition to the staff.”

Zhao, 26, has played in three Billie Jean King Cup ties so far in her career, the most recent coming in April when she and Rebecca Marino beat Ivana Jorovic and Aleksandra Krunic in a dead-rubber doubles match as Canada swept Serbia 4-0.

In addition to Zhao, Canada’s lineup for the Billie Jean King Cup Finals will also include Marino, Gabriela Dabrowski and Francoise Abanda.

Canada will start the Nov. 1-6 hardcourt competition by facing France and the Russian Tennis Federation in Group A.

Reporting by Frank Pingue; Editing by Ken Ferris

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