It wasn’t pretty, but Eugenie Bouchard managed to stay alive for another night at Flushing Meadows. The Westmount, Que. native defeated 30th ranked Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic 6-2, 6-7, 6-4 to move on to her first Round of 16 at the US Open on Saturday night.
Bouchard took her first set with ease, and it looked like she was going to make quick work of her opponent. But the feisty Zahlavova Strycova turned it up a notch in the second set, letting us all know it was going to be long night.
The 28-year-old Czech hit four aces, compared to Bouchard’s single ace. But the 20-year-old Canadian was too much in end, hitting 69% of her first serves in (57/83), and winning 68% of her first serves points. Bouchard moves on to face Ekaterina Makarova of Russia in the next round.
“I mean, you know, you don't always play amazing,” Bouchard said. “I did way more unforced errors than I expected myself to. So that definitely didn’t help my case in the second set. But, yeah, I mean, I could have definitely kept my emotions in check a little bit more.” “In the third set . . . when things still weren’t going my way, I felt a little lull in my game,” she said. “Somehow I was able to, you know, snap out of it and turn it around. “It’s important to at least realize when I’m in those moments, try to get myself out of it,” Bouchard said. “Which I was able to do.”
WTA Rising Star Belinda Bencic followed up her third round upset of Angelique Kerber with a stunner against Jelena Jankovic to reach her first Grand Slam quarterfinal.
From very early on in the match the No.9-seeded Jankovic knew Bencic would give her trouble - she hadn't lost her serve all fortnight long, and Bencic broke her in her first service game. But Jankovic got back on the saddle right away, grabbing a break in the next game and eventually building a 5-3 lead. She would even get to set point - one at 5-3, then another two at 5-4. But Bencic fought them all off and eventually won a tie-break to pocket the marathon opening set in an hour and 12 minutes.
Bencic broke early in the second set and never looked back to win, 7-6(6), 6-3. And she finished it off in style with back-to-back crosscourt backhand winners - her 29th and 30th winners of the match. The 17-year-old Bencic is the youngest player to reach a Grand Slam quarterfinal since a 17-year-old Nicole Vaidisova at the French Open in 2006, and the youngest player to reach the quarterfinals of the US Open since Martina Hingis made it all the way to the US Open title as a 16-year-old in 1997.
Perhaps fittingly, Hingis - whose mother and longtime coach, Melanie Molitor, also helps coach Bencic - was sitting in Bencic's player box on Sunday night, supporting her countrywoman to victory. Awaiting Bencic in the quarterfinals is another unseeded player in Peng Shuai, who has taken out three seeds to get here - No.4 seed Agnieszka Radwanska, No.28 seed Roberta Vinci and, on Sunday night, No.14 seed Lucie Safarova. Peng is through to her first career Grand Slam quarterfinal as well.
Swiss teenager Belinda Bencic has practiced alongside 1997 U.S. Open champion Martina Hingis for years under the tutelage of her coach, Hingis' mother, Melanie Molitor. "Almost everything I know, I know from her," Bencic says of Hingis, the former world No. 1.
Two-time U.S. Open runner-up Victoria Azarenka returned to the quarterfinals by ending the surprising run of Serbian qualifier Aleksandra Krunic.
The 16th-seeded Azarenka won four of the last five games to edge the 145th-ranked Krunic 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 Monday night. Krunic was trying to become the first qualifier since 1981 to reach the quarterfinals at Flushing Meadows, having already beaten Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova in the third round and No. 27 Madison Keys in the second.
Krunic gave Azarenka fits with her varied game, filled with drop shots and rushes to the net. But Azarenka's experience helped down the stretch. She owns two Australian Open titles and lost to Serena Williams in the U.S. Open final the past two years.
Russian Ekaterina Makarova moved into the quarter-finals of the U.S. Open with a 7-6(2) 6-4 win over seventh seed Eugenie Bouchard as the Canadian wilted under the punishing conditions.
With stifling humidity and on-court temperatures hovering near 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 Celsius) it was another day of survival of the fittest at the year's final grand slam and it was a challenge Bouchard could not meet, her bid for a fourth consecutive grand slam semi-final appearance coming to an end. A tense opening set played under a blazing sun that went to a tie-break and took 50 minutes to decide appeared to drain the 20-year-old Bouchard.
On serve 3-2 in the second, a distressed Bouchard called for a medical time out, trainers rushing onto the baking Louis Armstrong court to rub her arms and legs with bags of ice while checking her blood pressure. For a moment it seemed Bouchard would not be able to continue as she covered her face with her hands and wept. After regaining her composure, Bouchard gathered her resolve and returned to action but was quickly broken.
The battling Canadian, however, refused to throw in the towel, immediately breaking back to get back on serve. Makarova, however, would step up the pressure and in the end Bouchard simply ran out of steam, the 17th seeded Russian breaking her again at 5-4 and ending the ordeal with a sizzling winner down the line.
Former WIMBLEDON tennis champ JOHN McENROE gets waterboarded in “Clockwork,” a controversial new video from electronic rock band FUTURE USER centered around police militarization.
Shot at an undisclosed location in LOS ANGELES, CA, the disturbing clip sees McENROE being abducted, bound to a bench and tortured after dismissing a defeated tennis opponent with an obscene gesture. There were no stunt doubles or visual effects used; the outspoken tennis legend was immobilized, had a towel placed over his nose and mouth and then had water poured over his breathing passages to induce a drowning sensation. The steps were repeated approximately a half-dozen times over the course of a 90-minute shoot.
“It’s a pretty powerful clip,” says McENROE. “A friend involved with the project asked if I wanted to participate, saying he was making a video about living in a police state where people are punished for the smallest of infractions — sort of a ‘this could happen to you’ scenario. It seemed like a sci-fi concept at the time, but given everything that’s been happening around us lately, this video could easily be mistaken for an evening newscast. As for what it was like to shoot my scenes, let’s just say it was an experience I’ll never forget. I read about waterboarding and all the debates, and let me tell you from firsthand experience, it’s a brutal and terrifying form of torture. No one — American or otherwise — should ever have to endure that.”