Leylah Annie Fernandez (born September 6, 2002 in Montréal, Québec, Canada) is a Canadian professional tennis player. She reached a career-high WTA singles ranking of No. 17 on May 16, 2022 and a career-high WTA doubles ranking of No. 55 on May 16, 2022.
In 2017, in only her second professional event, Fernandez qualified for the main draw of the ITF 25K in Jackson. She defeated world No. 471 Dia Evtimova in the opening round and became the first player born in 2002 to win a main draw match at a 25K Challenger. She lost to former world No. 56 Alla Kudryavtseva in the next round. Also in 2017, she qualified for her second ITF 25K main draw but was defeated by compatriot Aleksandra Wozniak in the first round in Winnipeg. In 2018, Fernandez won one of her biggest titles on the junior circuit after defeating Clara Tauson at the ITF GA in Porto Alegre. At the 2018 junior French Open, her first Grand Slam, she reached the semifinals in singles. She also reached the quarterfinals in singles of the 2018 US Open. At the 2018 Coupe Banque Nationale, Fernandez got her first WTA main-draw win with a victory over compatriot Gabriela Dabrowski. She was defeated by Heather Watson in the second round. In 2019, she became the first Canadian girl to reach the singles final of the junior Australian Open, but was defeated by the first seed Clara Tauson. Also in 2019, she won her first Grand Slam title, defeating Emma Navarro at the junior French Open. At the 2019 Challenger de Gatineau, Fernandez captured her first professional titles, winning in both singles and doubles. The next week at the ITF 80K in Granby, she reached her second professional singles final but lost to Lizette Cabrera. In September 2019, she reached the No. 1 combined junior world ranking, the first time a Canadian girl has been top ranked and the second overall. Also in 2019, she advanced to her third ITF singles final, losing to Fernanda Contreras Gómez at the 25K in Waco. At the 2019 Challenger Banque Nationale de Saguenay, she captured her second ITF doubles title with compatriot Mélodie Collard. The next week in Toronto, Fernandez and Collard reached their second straight ITF 60K final where they were defeated by Robin Anderson and Jessika Ponchet. In 2020 at the Australian Open, she qualified for her first Grand Slam main draw where she lost to Lauren Davis in the first round. At the 2020 Fed Cup qualifying round, she defeated her first top-10 player thanks to a straight-sets win over world No. 5 Belinda Bencic. Fernandez reached her first WTA final at the 2020 Mexican Open in Acapulco, losing to Heather Watson. In October 2020, she reached the doubles final of the ITF 15K in Sharm El Sheikh with sister Bianca Jolie Fernandez, losing to Russians Veronika Pepelyaeva and Anastasia Tikhonova. In March 2021, Fernandez captured her first WTA title, defeating Viktorija Golubic in straight sets in the final of the 250 Series in Monterrey, Mexico. In September 2021, Fernandez became the fourth Canadian man or woman to reach a Grand Slam final in singles, finishing runner-up to Emma Raducanu at the US Open. In 2022, she defended her title in Monterrey with a victory over Camila Osorio. In 2020 and 2021, Fernandez was named Female Player of the Year by Tennis Canada. In 2021, Fernandez was awarded the Billie Jean King Cup Heart Award and the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award as the Canadian female athlete of the year.
Fernandez was born in Montréal but grew up in Laval. Her father is from Ecuador and her mother from the Philippines. She has an older sister, Jodeci, and a younger sister, Bianca Jolie, who also plays tennis. In the summer of 2015, she took home the two gold medals in singles competitions in two international tournaments in Italy and another gold medal in the Canadian U-16 Indoor Championships. Moving up two age brackets she also finished eighth in the Canadian U18 Championships held in Vancouver. Later that year, she finished third in the Québec U-16 indoor championships held in Repentigny. Fernandez is a product of the academy Tennis 13 in Laval. She is now training in Boynton Beach, Florida.
Grand Slam finals
Singles: 1 (1 runner-up)
Emma Raducanu (GBR)
WTA career finals
Singles: 4 (2 titles, 2 runners-up)
Grand Slam tournaments (0–1)
Olympic Games (0–0)
WTA Finals (0–0)
WTA Premier Mandatory & Premier 5 / WTA 1000 (0–0)
1 The first WTA 1000 event of the year (then a WTA Premier 5) has switched back and forth between the Dubai Tennis Championships and the Qatar Ladies Open beginning in 2009. Dubai was classified as a WTA Premier 5 event from 2009–2011 before being succeeded by Doha for the 2012–2014 period. From 2015 to 2020, the two tournaments alternated between WTA Premier 5 and Premier status every year.
NB The tournament in Cincinnati (then a WTA Premier 5) was played in New York City, the French Open was played in September and after the US Open, the Italian Open was also played in September and after the tournament in New York City/Cincinnati (then a WTA Premier 5), and the 2020 Olympic Games were postponed to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
NB The WTA 1000 tournament in Indian Wells was played in October and after the tournament in Cincinnati due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021.
Doubles performance timeline
This table is current through the 2022 Australian Open.
Grand Slam tournaments
0 / 2
0 / 2
0 / 1
0 / 1
0 / 6
NB The French Open was played in September and after the US Open due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
Wins over top-10 opponents
Fernandez has a 4–4 (50%) record against players who were, at the time the match was played, ranked in the top 10.