If you’ve been following the US Open, you probably heard of the name Leylah Fernandez. She is a 19-year-old up-and-coming athlete from Montreal who made it all the way to the finals of the US Open 2021.
Just a few years ago, another young Canadian, Bianca Andreescu, won the US Open against none other than the legendary Serena Williams. Canada has been excelling on the world stage of women’s sports lately.
Whether it is winning the hockey world championship or the gold medal in women’s football at the Olympics, Canada has been getting showered in laurels by its athletes. Indeed, Canada is becoming a bit of a sports lover Valhalla.
People travel to the country just to get an up-close look at where these great athletes grew up and trained (and maybe even meet them in person!).
Even though COVID put a stop to this for a while, nowadays it’s possible again to travel to Canada, provided you have a valid visa or eTA Canada, and comply with the COVID rules.
Returning to up-and-coming athletes, Leylah Fernandez is perhaps the most relevant name at the moment.
Bianca Andreesc is one of the biggest Canadian stars
Like many Canadians, she is a first-generation Canadian. Her father is Ecuadorian and her mother is Filipino. Her younger sister Bianca Jolie is also a tennis star. She won her first title in the WTA singles tournament at the Monterrey Open in 2021.
She is ranked 24th in singles, the highest ranking in her career. There are many similarities to her domestic counterpart Bianca Andreescu.
Andreescu was born in Mississauga, a suburb of Toronto. Her parents emigrated from Romania to Canada in 1994, when her father got a job in the country. Andreescu’s father worked as a mechanical engineer for an automotive company.
She started training more seriously when she was 12 years old. She is the first Canadian tennis star to win a Grand Slam singles title and the first to win the Canadian Open in 50 years.
She is also the first player to win a Grand Slam singles title as a teenager since Maria Sharapova in 2004.
Her style of play combines power and versatility and is widely regarded by tennis commentators and journalists as “fun to watch”. She enjoys great support from both Canadian and Romanian fans.
Although the years since her victory in 2019 have been marked by injuries, she is still considered one of the best tennis players in the world.
Don’t forget Marie-Philip Poulin-Nadeau!
Marie-Philip Poulin-Nadeau is a Canadian ice hockey striker who is captain of the Canadian national team. She is a two-time Olympic champion and two-time World Champion with the Canadian national team.
Marie-Philip Poulin scored the winning goal in the gold medal games of the first two Olympics she competed in, in 2010 (at the Vancouver Olympics, when Canada was of course hosting) and in 2014, earning her the nickname “Captain Clutch” from her teammates and the media.
But perhaps the most impressive achievement by Canadians this summer was the gold medal won by the Canadian women’s football team at the Olympics. The captain of that team was Christine Sinclair.
After coming so close to the title at the 2012 London Olympics, Sinclair was awarded a penalty kick in the final against Sweden on August 6, which was set up by Jesse Fleming in the second half of regular playing time.
After a 1-1 draw in extra time, Canada eventually won 3-2 on penalties to capture the gold medal in women’s football for the first time. In September 2013, Sinclair was inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame and in June 2017, she was named Officer in the Order of Canada.
As mentioned earlier, if you have a mind to travel to the country that produces these incredible female athletes, you need either a visa or an eTA for Canada.
The good news is that the eTA is cheap, valid for five years and can be applied for online in a matter of minutes.
An eTAcan be used to stay in Canada for up to 6 months.
In other words, you can attend as many hockey, football and tennis matches as you can fit into your holiday!