(Montreal) In 2024, Leylah Annie Fernandez sees herself participating in the Olympic tennis tournament to be held in Paris from July 27 to August 4, and she aspires to climb into the top 10 in women’s singles. But for such ambitions to come to fruition, the Laval resident is aware that consistency, from one tournament to another and from one match to another, is essential.

This regularity, Fernandez seems to have already acquired it, at least in the eyes of the leaders of Tennis Canada. On Tuesday, they awarded her the Player of the Year and Singles Player of the Year awards for a fourth consecutive year.

Among the men, Félix Auger-Aliassime was chosen Player of the Year and Singles Player of the Year for a third year in a row.

The 23-year-old overcame a difficult start to the season to end the year with encouraging results. He notably successfully defended his title in Basel, and helped Team World defeat Team Europe at the Laver Cup.

Furthermore, the Ontarian Gabriela Dabrowski and the British Columbian Vasek Pospisil earned the title of doubles player of the year, while the Ontarian Marina Stakusic, who revealed herself during the Billie-Jean-King Cup , and Quebecer Gabriel Diallo obtained the title of most improved singles player.

Fernandez electrified tennis fans in Quebec and Canada by leading his country to its first triumph in its history at the Billie-Jean-King Cup on November 12 in Seville, Spain. About a month earlier, she had won a third career singles tournament, in Hong Kong.

But the regularity to which Fernandez alludes is the one which will allow him to progress within the tables of the numerous tournaments which fill the long calendar.

“In 2024, we want to be very, very consistent, to have a lot of regularity in my results. We don’t want to lose in the first rounds; we want to get to the quarter-finals. That’s one of my goals,” said Fernandez, who met the media during a press scrum at the IGA Stadium on Tuesday noon.

“I also want to finish the year healthy, mentally, emotionally, physically. That’s the most important thing,” she continued.

When revealing her personal goals, Fernandez rarely mentions the world rankings. If you ask her, she answers straight away.

“I want to finish top 10, of course,” she admits with a laugh.

“With consistency, the ranking will go up. It comes together. The most important thing is to think about what I can control now. And what I can control now is consistency, it’s my game, my attitude. The way I carry myself on the field,” added Fernandez, who will fly to Florida on Wednesday to spend the holidays with family.

Fernandez started the year ranked 40th in singles and ended it ranked 35th. However, this rise of five places was also marked by a significant slide in the rankings at the start of the summer.

Furthermore, the 21-year-old from Laval has climbed the ranks of the women’s doubles world rankings quite steadily – to the point where she went from 77th place, at the start of January 2023, to 20th place.

Asked to explain what contributed to this rise, Fernandez paid tribute to the two players with whom she spent a lot of time in doubles during the year, the American Taylor Townsend and Dabrowski.

Fernandez and Townsend teamed up for the first time, in 2023, in early March in Indian Wells. Less than a month later, they lost in the final at the Miami Open against Americans Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula, one of the best duos in the world.

In May, Fernandez and Townsend reached the semi-final of the Madrid Open, then the final of the French Open in June.

Also, Fernandez and Dabrowski joined forces to defeat the Czech duo of Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova in the deciding match of the Billie-Jean King Cup semi-final.

“I was lucky to be able to share the court with Taylor. She is very offensive, very combative, she always wants to win. That also helps, in difficult matches,” Fernandez underlined.

“I also had a lot of opportunities to share the court with ‘Gaby,’” Fernandez added of Dabrowski. She taught me a lot about tactics, how to play at the net, to always be ready and not to be afraid to take risks. Every time I play with her, I learn a lot. »

It is not impossible that Fernandez and Dabrowski will team up in doubles again, this time during the Paris Olympics. And we can even envisage a duo formed by Fernandez and Auger-Aliassime in the mixed doubles competition. Without forgetting the women’s singles, of course.

“Gold medal, singles, doubles, mixed, that’s the dream. We want to win. I have no idea if I will play mixed, doubles or even singles. We’ll see if I qualify first. But for me, the Olympic Games are a very important tournament. We want to represent our country, and I always want to play well,” summarized the Quebecer.