Tennis

Canada's Gabriela Dabrowski calls U.S. Open victory the highlight of her career

Three days after conquering Flushing Meadows, Gabriela Dabrowski still finds it hard to believe what she has accomplished.

Ottawa native victorious in women's doubles with Erin Routliffe, who grew up in Ontario

Two tennis players embrace on the court.
Erin Routliffe, of New Zealand, right, hugs Canada's Gabriela Dabrowski, left, after winning the U.S. Open women's doubles title. (Manu Fernandez/The Associated Press)

Three days after conquering Flushing Meadows, Gabriela Dabrowski still finds it hard to believe what she has accomplished.

The 31-year-old tennis player from Ottawa and her playing partner Erin Routliffe defeated Laura Siegemund and Vera Zvonareva 7-6 (9), 6-3 to claim the women's doubles title at the U.S. Open.

"It's clear that it means a lot to me. It's even a little surreal that it's happening to me," she said Wednesday.

"I reached the final at Wimbledon in 2019, so I came very close. But to find myself in another final and to be able to win with another Canadian it's truly remarkable."

WATCH | Dabrowski discusses breakthrough victory:

Gabriela Dabrowski on winning the U.S. Open women's doubles title

7 months ago
Duration 1:20
Gabriela Dabrowski speaks to CBC Sports about being the first Canadian to win a major title in the women’s doubles event at the U.S. Open.

Routliffe was born in New Zealand and now competes as a Kiwi, but she grew up in Caledon, Ont. and trained at the National Tennis Centre in Montreal.

Dabrowski has won two mixed doubles titles at Grand Slam events — in 2017 at the French Open and in 2018 at the Australian Open. However, she considers Sunday's victory on the New York hard court as her greatest achievement.

"Yes, it's bigger than mixed doubles, where teams are often put together at the last minute," she said without hesitation. "There are more entries, and the competition is stronger."

Dabrowski, a WTA doubles winner in Toronto (2021) and Madrid (2022) with Brazilian partner Luisa Stefani, won't have much time to celebrate this victory. She will leave for the Guadalajara Masters on Friday before continuing on to two tournaments in Asia.

She will also be part of the Billie Jean King Cup later this fall.

WATCH | Dabrowski, Routliffe win U.S. Open:

Ottawa's Gabriela Dabrowski wins 1st Grand Slam women's doubles title at U.S. Open

8 months ago
Duration 4:14
Ottawa's Gabriela Dabrowski and her partner Erin Routliffe, who represents New Zealand but formerly represented Canada, beat Germany's Laura Siegemund and Russia's Vera Zvonareva 7-6(9), 6-3 to claim their first women's doubles Grand Slam title in only their fourth tournament together.

In the medium term, however, it's the Paris 2024 Olympics that she has her sights on.

Dabrowski, who participated in the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro (in 2016, with Eugenie Bouchard) and Tokyo (in 2021, with Sharon Fichman), would like to add an Olympic medal to her resume.

"That's my main goal, and I hope to make it there. I want to win a medal for Canada," she revealed.

And why not with Leylah Fernandez?

"We'll have to wait after the French Open next year to see if we have the necessary ranking to participate. If Leylah were to qualify, then I would love to play with her. It would be a dream come true," Dabrowski added.

This could be a dream duo for Canada as well.

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