Eugenie Bouchard and Alisa Kleybanova will meet in the opening round of the Portugal Open on Tuesday afternoon, in what should be an entertaining match-up. This marks the second time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour, with Bouchard leading the series 1-0 with a victory last season at the Rogers Cup in Toronto.
Canadian No. 1 Eugenie Bouchard will begin her week in Portugal with a surprisingly tough opening round match-up against Alisa Kleybanova, who has been putting on notable performances over the past few weeks. It will be interesting to see how Bouchard performs in her second tournament on the red dust, after she began her clay court season in Charleston, where she reached the semi-finals before losing to eventual champion Andrea Petkovic.
Bouchard’s draw is not an easy one this week, as she begins her campaign against Kleybanova and could potentially face Svetlana Kuznetsova and then later top seed Carla Suarez Navarro or even Lucie Safarova.
Apart from her notable victory against Dominika Cibulkova earlier this season, world No. 87 Alisa Kleybanova continued to up her game, particularly during the start of the clay court season, as she reached the quarter-finals in Stuttgart, defeating Petra Kvitova in the process before losing to Jelena Jankovic in the following round. She will be looking to continue to perform well this week in Oeiras, starting with an upset victory over one of the tournament’s top seeds.
This marks the second time these two competitors will meet on the WTA tour, with Bouchard leading the series 1-0. The Canadian’s victory took place on hard court, which is certainly her preferred surface. While this may be a more competitive battle on clay, an in-form Bouchard should be the favourite to reach the second round in Oeiras.