Eugenie Bouchard and Yaroslava Shvedova will meet in the opening round of the Portugal Open on Wednesday afternoon, in what should be an entertaining first-time match-up. The Canadian has already worked her way through a tough opponent on Tuesday and will be looking for another convincing performance en route to the quarter-finals.
Although her clay court season began in Charleston, where she defeated bot Venus Williams and Jelena Jankovic en route to the semi-final round, Eugenie Bouchard’s European clay court season began on Tuesday afternoon, when she defeated Alisa Kleybanova 6-4, 6-1 to reach the second round of the Portugal Open. The match began as a competitive one, yet it was ultimately Bouchard who remained in form throughout the match, and breezed through the second set.
“It was a solid performance. I was pretty happy with how I played – I was aggressive but I was also able to neutralize her shots, because she can hit some pretty big balls,” Bouchard said after the match. “I really tried to take advantage of my serve and just tried to put pressure on her whenever I could. I’m moving well on the clay and it’s good to get another win.”
Yaroslava Shvedova defeated the unpredictable Karin Knapp, 6-2, 6-4, on Monday to set up her second round match-up against the top ranked Canadian. Her key performance this season came when she defeated the 2010 French Open champion Francesca Shiavone 6-4, 6-2 in just over an hour in the opening round of the Sony Open.
This marks the first time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour. It will be interested to see if Shvedova, who is yet to beat a Top 20 competitor this season, will be able to trouble the durable Canadian in this match-up, or if it will simply end in a straight sets win for Bouchard.
Prediction: Eugenie Bouchard in Straight Sets