New York - Canadian teen Bianca Andreescu, into her first Grand Slam quarter-final, says she has never felt more confident at a tennis tournament and that she expects to win the US Open.
The 19-year-old from suburban Toronto will face Belgian 25th seed Elise Mertens on Wednesday for a berth in Thursday's semi-finals after beating US qualifier Taylor Townsend 6-1, 4-6, 6-2.
"It feels awesome. I've been working and dreaming of this moment for a really long time, so it feels pretty damn good to be in the quarters here," Andreescu said.
"I'm really happy, but the tournament's not done yet. I think I can do even better than get to the quarters here this year."
Andreescu, who won WTA titles in March at Indian Wells and last month at the Rogers Cup in Toronto, would become the youngest US Open champion since Svetlana Kuznetsova in 2004 if she wins Saturday's final, a week older than the Russian was when she lifted the trophy 15 years ago.
Asked if she expected to win her first Grand Slam title this week on the Flushing Meadows hardcourts, Andreescu replied: "Every tournament I go into, I want to win it. I expect a lot from myself which -- yes, to answer your question.
"But I'm going to just take it match after match because I know I have a lot of tough opponents before I reach the final. I'm just going to enjoy this moment right now and hopefully I can win on Wednesday."
Andreescu has never faced Mertens or her potential semi-final rivals, Swiss 13th seed Belinda Bencic and Croatian 23rd seed Donna Vekic, who also play Wednesday.
But she's more concerned about her own game and mental state.
"I've never felt this confident before," Andreescu said. "I'm just taking the momentum from Rogers Cup into this tournament. This year has been the best year of my life so far.
"I'm playing better here than at Rogers Cup. I think the scores also show that. It's definitely nicer to win in two. It's easier on the body and on the mind.
"My goal from the beginning of the match to the end is to stay focused throughout the whole match. I think that's what I've been doing really well this week."
She has also faced tense moments and crowds supporting her opponent and handled the pressure with composure.
"I'm just really happy with how calm I stayed during those moments," said Andreescu. "I think I kept my cool. That's the one thing I learned -- if I just keep calm, I stay as positive as I can, I think the crowd can't beat me."