Rogers Cup in La belle province: Le match de la journée
August 8, 2012 · Print This Article
First, Eugenie Bouchard won her first point, then she won her first game, then she won her first set and, soon enough after 2:14 of play, she had won her first match.
On Wednesday, the first round of the 2012 Rogers Cup concluded, and the most anticipated match of the day featured a rising star in 18-year-old Canadian Eugenie Bouchard. In her first match in her native Montreal after having received a wild-card entry, Bouchard moved on to the second round with a victory over No. 56-ranked Shahar Peer. “It gives me a lot of confidence,” she told reporters later that evening. “But it doesn’t come as a surprise for me, because I know that I have the level (of play) to do that and much more.”
It was a thrilling contest, where both players won a convincing set each before a tight deciding set. In the end, the young Canadian won 3-6, 6-2 and 7-5.
Bouchard started great and was one point away from going up 3-0 before the Israeli Peer battled back and seized control. She lost her bearings in the second set, however, and it was Bouchard who took advantage. The Canadian said that, “I never let up.”
The deciding set was different in that both were dominant on their serve. Bouchard was finally broken at 3-3 and, just when it seemed like she would falter she broke Peer right back. She did again to win the match.
Bouchard said that she had some good hindsight in the way her opponent would play, which is steadily and by relying on a good serve. She praised the crowd, saying that for some points it got so loud that “it hurt my ears.”
Her opponent was frustrated with herself afterward. “I think I played some of the match fine,” she said, “but overall, I made a lot of mistakes.”
Bouchard’s reward for this first victory is a second-round match, at 6 p.m. on Thursday August 9, against World No. 11 and the Rogers Cup’s 10th-seed Na Li. Bouchard said that she “will sleep tonight, and I’ll be fine (Thursday).”
The pressure is high on the young player to live up to the potential she’s hinted at possessing. “I don’t really listen to any outside pressure anyway,” said Bouchard, who certainly showed plenty in this first match. “I already put the highest pressure on myself.”
Though this is a nice win for the native of Westmount, Que., that’s how it should be seen–it’s a nice win, and nothing else. She very well may be the savior of Canadian tennis on the women’s side, but it won’t happen overnight and she doesn’t have to be that right away. For now, she can just be the ladies Wimbledon champion for singles and doubles and the No. 2-ranked junior in the world.
And you know what? That’s plenty enough for an 18-year-old.
Follow Charles Blouin-Gascon on Twitter @CeeeBG