Andy Roddick is cheering the 21-year-old tennis player on as she prepares to compete for her first Grand Slam title over the weekend

By Maria Pasquini
January 30, 2020 02:40 PM
Advertisement
Credit: Gary Miller/WireImage; Mike Coppola/Getty

Sofia Kenin has always known she could win big!

As the 21-year-old American tennis player prepares to compete for her first Grand Slam title this weekend, Andy Roddick re-tweeted a throwback video in which Kenin boasted about how her own skills stacked up against the now-retired tennis pro.

In the clip, which was resurfaced by the Tennis Channel last year, a 7-year-old Kenin appeared very confident that she could go toe-to-toe with Roddick, who is 16 years older. “What do you think is the secret to beating Andy Roddick?” an interviewer asks her, as she replies, “That I could return his serve” before laying out a potential plan of attack.

And on Thursday, Roddick tweeted the throwback clip following Kenin’s semi-final win at the Australian Open. “This girl has become the goods! Kick ass and bring home the title @SofiaKenin So cool,” he wrote.

When Kenin learned that Roddick, 37, had given her a social media shout-out, she could barely contain her excitement. In a video, she jokingly shared that his Tweet was the biggest thing that had happened to her.

“What are you most excited about right now?” she gets asked in the clip, replying “Andy Roddick just tweeted me!”

“Thank you @andyroddick,” she captioned the clip.

Speaking on the court, just moments after defeating Australian Ashleigh Barty — who is ranked No. 1 in the world — Kenin again referenced the throwback video as she pointed out how much this milestone means to her.

“Honestly, I’m just so speechless. I honestly can’t believe this. I’ve just dreamed about this since I was 5 years old with that Andy Roddick video, I’m sure you guys saw that,“ Kenin told the crowd.

Kenin, who was born in Russia, began playing in USTA youth tournaments when she was 7, and by 2014 she was competing in the Summer Youth Olympics, according to USA Today.

Since going pro in 2017, Kenin has competed in several Grand Slam tournaments, but prior to this year, she had not made it past the fourth round of a major competition, according to the outlet. Up until now, her best finish has been at the 2019 French Open, which included a shocking win against Serena Williams in the third round.

Kenin is now the first American to beat the top-ranked player in a major since Serena defeated sister Venus Williams in 2002 at Wimbledon, according to NBC Sports.

“I know people haven’t really paid attention much to me in the past,” she told ESPN. “I had to establish myself, and I have. I’m not shocked. It’s a dream come true for me. I’ve always dreamed about this. Of course, I believed in myself.”

Kenin will face off against Garbiñe Muguruza in the Australian Open finals on Saturday.