Newspaper article International New York Times

Suffering a Setback on the Comeback Trail ; Bouchard Admits Mental Lapse in Second-Round Loss against Bacsinszky

Newspaper article International New York Times

Suffering a Setback on the Comeback Trail ; Bouchard Admits Mental Lapse in Second-Round Loss against Bacsinszky

Article excerpt

Eugenie Bouchard's struggle to regain her best form took a significant hit at the French Open as she lost to Timea Bacsinszky on Thursday after starting strongly.

Eugenie Bouchard's torturous slog across the continents to regain her best form took a significant hit at the French Open on Thursday. In a battle of former Roland Garros semifinalists, Bouchard was leading by four games to one in the first set and was possibly on path to an important victory over No. 9 Timea Bacsinszky.

But in an abrupt turn that mirrored her recent career downturn, Bouchard's focus blurred and she lost 10 games in a row. Bacsinszky, who reached the French Open semifinals last year, won, 6-4, 6-4, to advance to the third round.

Bacsinszky is a worthy opponent, to be sure. But the after her loss, Bouchard chastised herself for her mental lapses, especially because that is an area she had been emphasizing in recent months as a way to reverse her misfortune.

"It's unacceptable, really, to lose ten games in a row in a match," she said. "I think that my focus a little bit was the part that let me down, the mental part, something I've been working on."

Bouchard added that the loss was also particularly disappointing because she felt she had begun to steer her career onto a more successful track after months of frustration and pain.

The past year has been nightmarish for Bouchard, whose lack of success in the wake of immense expectations was compounded by a frightening locker-room accident at the United States Open last September.

The 22-year-old Canadian had reached the quarterfinals in the 2015 Australian Open, but then she was eliminated in her first match at 10 of 15 tournaments leading up to New York. There, things began to turn more positively, at first. She won three matches, enhancing her self-confidence.

But after her third match, Bouchard fell in a training room and suffered a concussion, forcing her to withdraw from the tournament.

She played one more match in October, but that was it for the rest of the year. Her ranking plummeted to 48. The year before she was No. 7, the numerical reward for reaching the semifinals of the Australian Open and the French Open, and the Wimbledon final, where she lost to Petra Kvitova.

Asked on Thursday what advice she might give to a younger version of herself, she gave a brief but perhaps revealing answer.

"For me it would be to not worry about what people say about you," she explained, "and not listen to all the noise around you."

Bouchard's record this year is 19-11, and she was 3-3 on clay coming to Roland Garros. She easily won her first-round match against Laura Siegemund.

She said she feels fine physically, and she said that reuniting with Nick Saviano as her coach two months ago had already been beneficial.

Bouchard was able to take solace in the idea that the work they are doing together is geared toward sustaining success into the future. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.