Eugenie Bouchard vs. Maria Sharapova: WTA Madrid, 2nd Round Preview

 

You couldn’t have written the script any better… ten days after Eugenie Bouchard came out with some of the harshest comments about Maria Sharapova including calling her a “cheater”, the pair will meet in an absolutely mouthwatering second round clash in Madrid at not before 8pm local time on Monday.

While the match-up had been heavily anticipated, it didn’t look all that likely on paper. Bouchard had been in terrible form since the Australian Open, while Sharapova faced a brutal first round match-up against the in-form, Mirjana Lucic-Baroni.

Bouchard scored a really encouraging first round win over Alizé Cornet, 6-4 4-6 6-1. The Canadian player talked in press about dipping back onto the ITF circuit, which she called as ‘punishment’ – more can be found in an article written by Courtney Nguyen for the WTA HERE. I can’t say I was that impressed with Bouchard’s comments about Sharapova in the sense that she should be focusing on herself, but she does always come across as very honest in press about her own game.

Sharapova also came through in three sets, showcasing some of her trademark grit and determination to see off an at times lethal, Lucic-Baroni, 4-6 6-4 6-0. The Croatian player was dictating rallies in the first set and battering returns, as she has done all year. Sharapova improved on serve in the second set and fought off a spirited late comeback from Lucic-Baroni, eventually breaking for the second set including a pair of return winners.

Sharapova took control of the match in the third set as Lucic-Baroni’s challenged faded away at a rapid rate. The stats demonstrated the control that Lucic-Baroni had for much of the match – Lucic-Baroni hit 41 winners to 34 unforced errors, while Sharapova produced 16 winners to 10 unforced errors.

Head-to-head record: Sharapova leads Bouchard, 4-0 in their head-to-head. Their most recent match was at the Australian Open where Sharapova won, 6-3 6-2 in the quarter-finals. The pair have played twice before on the clay with Bouchard’s only set in this match-up coming in a stirring semi-final match at the 2015 French Open which Sharapova won, 4-6 7-5 6-2.

Final thoughts: I’m just here for the handshake… it will probably be a letdown but i’m still super excited about watching this one! I think it’s obvious that both players are going to be so motivated to win, Bouchard perhaps more outwardly after her recent comments. Playing Lucic-Baroni was the perfect warm-up for Sharapova as Bouchard plays an equally aggressive game. While she is still so soon into her comeback, there have been some positive signs from Sharapova and I feel that she does everything a little bit better than Bouchard, who has shown rare glimpses of quality but an overall lack of consistency during the year.

Hope it lives up to expectation, i’m a neutral for this one!

Photo in this post by mootennis.com

22 thoughts on “Eugenie Bouchard vs. Maria Sharapova: WTA Madrid, 2nd Round Preview

  1. I am the furthest away from being a neutral in this match – my favourite player against my least favourite player. I hope Sharapova absolutely mops the floor with Bouchard!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I totally agree Vithun, it’s a shame Bouchard is so classless, sure hope she never makes a mistake, would hate that no one would give her a second chance. She got lucky today, she’s not even close to the player Sharapova is and will always be, especially since people love Sharapova and think Bouchard’s a bitch.

      Like

      • There’s a sort of nerdishness about Genie that I can relate to. She was apparently very good at maths when she was at school (usually scoring 100% on maths tests, according to her parents) and would probably have gone on to study something science-related if she hadn’t gone into tennis. I don’t dislike her and am glad she’s started to do well again.

        My heart went out to her after her Wimbledon final when she was sitting there on Centre Court on her own after Petra had wiped the floor with her, especially in the second set of the match; it’s one thing to have a bad day at work, another to have it in front of millions of people when you’re only 20. I felt like giving her a hug at that point.

        It has to be said though that, like Maria, she’s got huge numbers of fans but few, if any, real friends in tennis. She’s also suffered from the fact she’s had no real mentor from her own country to encourage her and give her some guidance, in the way that, for example, the Czech players had Martina and the Germans had Steffi Graf.

        The only top Canadian woman player before Genie was Carling Bassett, and although she’s been encouraging from the sidelines and has said n ice things about her in the press, she by her own admission doesn’t have too much to do with women’s tennis nowadays.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I don’t feel sorry for Bouchard… she deliberately played up the bitch card to be compared to Sharapova, which paid off big time for her financially, but backfired when she had to back up the hype that she’d set up for herself.
        I especially don’t feel sorry for the slaughtering she received in the Wimbledon final. She paid the price for bigging herself up.

        Like

  2. I’m quite neutral, Mladenovic already gave me the needed answers by backing her own talk about Maria. I guess this may end up being the new ‘CoCo Van’ match up for Genie. Hopefully the shade will be kept at a minimum and tennis can flourish. The WTA needs it now with the game being in a flux.

    I will give the edge to Maria, she needs the points.

    Like

  3. I am always amazed when little 5′-2 Lauren Davis wins any match. The CSN vs Wozniaki should be interesting, with the home crowd pulling for CSN.

    Like

  4. I have no qualms about wanting Sharapova to absolutely destroy Bouchard. I’d been pretty sad that Bouchard wasn’t playing well, and I rooted for her this past year, but her comments completely turned me off to her success lol. If Sharapova wins there will be no handshake lol

    Like

  5. I reckon Bouchard will be motivated to play since she always wishes to replace Sharapova as Nike top model. However, I think Sharapova will blast her away.

    Like

  6. Ok, really? 312 people saying Bouchard will beat Maria. Have they not watched Bouchard play a match in the last 2 years?? She may be motivated and everything, but it doesn’t diminish the fact that Genie has failed to play good tennis and get a string of wins. Who know what’ll happen in this match, but come on.

    Like

      • This is some crazy polling indeed! Seems like a case of heart ruling head.

        I would love to see a fired up and focused Bouchard’s game click for this one, but it’s hard to look see anything but a fairly straightforward win for Sharapova here. Bouchard is capable of losing to just about anyone at the moment, and I think Sharapova beats just about anyone on this surface, even though she’s so early into her comeback.
        Hoping to be surprised.

        Like

    • Yeah it’s insaaaane!

      Funnily enough I thought that Bouchard’s gameplay in 2014 was very reminiscent of a 2004 Sharapova. The difference between them is that Maria accepted pretty quickly that it wasn’t a consistent enough approach to playing, and she put the time and effort in to focus to a big hitting, baseline game style, going from speeding up play to instead slowing it down…

      Like

  7. I agree with createdsick except that the best I’ve seen Genie play in the past was against Maria, so it’s just possible that she’s really up for this one.

    Like

  8. I feel like the screaming hinders Maria’s play. Some boxers are taught this as well. Shout when they punch as a way to both increase oxygen intake and direct their shot, but I have never been a proponent of this. I think it’s a disadvantage and it allows your opponent to gauge timing better.

    Like

  9. Sure hope you never make a mistake Genie and are never given a second chance, just like you wished Sharapova. The bottom line is you will never be the player she is and you are so classless it’s a joke. There was no need for you to say that you received texts and that players were coming up to you and hoping you beat Sharapova. You can’t even win with class,…..

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s