Newly crowned US Open champion Bianca Andreescu feels her win against Venus Williams at the ASB Classic was the catalyst for her to go on and win her first Grand Slam.
Andreescu became the first Canadian to win a tennis major, when she defeated Williams' younger sister, Serena, 6-3, 7-5 at Arthur Ashe Stadium on Sunday (NZ time).
The 19-year-old has come a long way since the start of the year, which began in Auckland, where she had to win a qualifying tournament to reach the main draw of the ASB Classic.
At the time, she was ranked 152nd in the world and she made headlines by going all the way to the final, losing to Julia Görges 2-6, 7-5, 6-1.
But he Ontario native feels her quarter-final win over Venus Williams was the match that helped her gain a winning mentality.
"I think my win against Venus really drove something out of me," she told the World Tennis Association (WTA). "I think that match definitely sparked something in me.
"I did not think I was going to win a Grand Slam that same year, that is for sure. But I really did think I could do very well this year and I think I have been doing that."
Earlier this month, Andreescu confirmed she would return to Auckland for the 2020 ASB Classic.
She has four titles to her name this year, winning the Cincinnati Masters, Indian Wells, the Rogers Cup in her home province of Ontario and now the US Open.
Andreescu said she did not expect her first major triumph to come so soon and was delighted to see her memorable road to victory "inspire others".
"I have been dreaming about this since I was a kid and it is a different story when you dream about it.
"For it to actually happen, it is totally crazy. I never thought it would come this soon.
"I have been getting some messages, saying that people have actually picked up a racket or started watching tennis, because of my win at the US Open.
"All of that means so much, because I remember I was a kid and I remember looking up to so many people, especially Canadian athletes. So they paved the way for me and now I guess it is my turn to pave the way for others."