Bianca Andreescu is one of Canada's highest-ranked athletes, and she says there is another sport she would have pursued if she wasn't playing tennis.
Narcity spoke with Andreescu about her backup dream career and which athlete she admires and the Mississauga native was quick to throw praise behind a fellow Canadian.
While many athletes look up to the tennis star, Andreescu says there's a fellow Canadian athlete she looks up to and admires: Penny Oleksiak.
"She's the most decorated athlete in Canada. I think she won her first gold medal at the age of 16 or something crazy like that," Andreescu said.
"I've seen the way she talks, the way she acts, the way she trains, the way she does things. That to me is an inspiration and I wish I was in Toronto more to be around that, to be around her because she definitely motivates me."
Andreescu didn't just grow up playing tennis. She also played soccer, swam, did gymnastics and skated throughout her childhood.
One of those sports always meant a lot to the Canadian professional athlete and she says she would have loved to pursue it if she didn't get into tennis.
"I grew up skating, so I definitely would be a figure skater. I still do [skate] sometimes. I definitely have to be careful because anything can happen on that ice. I do love it," she told Narcity.
The 23-year-old athlete has achieved a lot throughout her career. In 2019, she won both the Canadian and U.S. Opens and became the first Canadian singles tennis player to win a grand slam title.
She also became the first tennis player to win the Lou Marsh Trophy as Canada's Athlete of the Year in 2019.
Andreescu is currently focusing on her recovery following a back injury and the tennis star has her sights set on the Australian Open in January 2024.
As she gears up for that and the 2024 Summer Olympics, which Andreescu says she would love to compete in, she has a message for any young athletes who want to get into sports professionally.
"Being an athlete isn't the easiest thing, but it's also the most beautiful thing too at the same time," she told Narcity.
"Nothing good comes easy. You have to work hard, you have to persevere. You have to make some sacrifices along the way. But if you truly love something, go after it. Follow your heart. No matter what anybody says."
This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.