Salisbury JournalFinalist Bouchard keeps her cool (From Salisbury Journal)

If you have a story call our newsdesk on 01722 426511 or email us. To advertise call 01722 426500.

National Sport News RSS Feed

Finalist Bouchard keeps her cool

Salisbury Journal: Eugenie Bouchard powered her way into her first grand slam final with victory over Simona Halep Eugenie Bouchard powered her way into her first grand slam final with victory over Simona Halep

There were only muted celebrations from ice-cool Canadian Eugenie Bouchard on reaching her first grand slam final at Wimbledon.

The message from the 20-year-old was very clear - the job is not finished.

Bouchard defeated third seed Simona Halep 7-6 (7/5) 6-2 and will play 2011 champion Petra Kvitova on Saturday.

The junior champion only two years ago, Bouchard's progress has been remarkably swift, but her achievements are nothing more than the Canadian expected.

When she finally clinched victory on her sixth match point for the biggest win of her life, Bouchard briefly raised her arms and gave a small fist pump.

"I'm waiting for a big moment to go nuts," she said.

"Of course, achieving a lifelong dream like winning a slam is very exciting to me. B ut I feel like my job is not done here, so there's no need for a huge celebration because I'm still working. I still have another match.

"But it's not a surprise to me. I expect good results like this. So for me, I was like, 'Okay, good'. It's a step in the right direction."

Bouchard is the only singles player among the men and women to have reached the semi-finals at the first three grand slams of the year.

After losing to Li Na in Australia and Maria Sharapova at the French Open last month, she arrived in London full of confidence.

She said: "I didn't set a specific goal of reaching a certain round of this tournament, but I've been feeling good these whole two weeks.

"After doing well in the past few slams, I've been believing since the beginning of the tournament that I can do really well.

"It's really important not to get ahead of ourselves b ut I totally feel like I belong, and I'm just so excited for the next match."

It was a meeting between the two most improved players in the women's game, with 22-year-old Halep having reached her first slam final at the French Open, losing a titanic battle with Sharapova.

Things quickly took a wrong turn for the Romanian, though, when she rolled her ankle in the fourth game.

She held on to force a tie-break in the opening set, which was halted for a number of minutes at 3-2 to Halep when a woman in the crowd fell ill.

Halep won the first point on the resumption but Bouchard then benefited from a very lucky net-cord and took full advantage with a run of four successive points.

"It's pretty tough to stop in the middle of a tie-break," said Bouchard. "It was intense and then to just not play tennis for three minutes messes up the rhythm.

"But I took it as a challenge. I missed the next return. It wasn't a great point. But then I stepped up my game."

Halep saved one set point but not a second, and Bouchard quickly ran away with the second set.

The only moments of concern for the Canadian came right at the end when she could not take any of her first five match points across two games, but on the sixth she hit an unreturnable serve.

Halep, who also had her left thigh strapped, felt hampered by the ankle injury and was left cursing Bouchard's luck in the tie-break.

But the Romanian was content with her best ever Wimbledon and is looking forward to playing on home soil in Bucharest next week.

Halep said: "It was difficult to continue because I twisted my ankle. I felt a big pain in the moment but then it was better with the tape. But still I couldn't push any more with my leg. My first serve was really bad after that.

"In the tie-break it was a lucky ball at 4-2 and she came back really well after that.

"I think I played until the end, but in the second set I lost my energy and I couldn't believe any more that I could finish the match in the right way for me.

"But I'm really happy that I could play semi-finals here. It's my best result at Wimbledon. I cannot be sad now."

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree