Eugenie Bouchard thumps top-10 Sara Errani in Indian Wells

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

INDIAN WELLS, Calif. – For all the angst that seemed to be swirling around Canada’s Genie Bouchard in the days before she began her campaign at the BNP Paribas Open, her two victories so far have been clinical.

The first win over the solid Chinese veteran Peng Shuai, taken by its lonesome, might not have been an indicator of all that much.

But Bouchard followed it up with an emphatic 6-3, 6-3 victory Sunday afternoon over the Italian Sara Errani, the No. 9 seed and a fixture in the top 10 for the last few years.

That jumps her apparently good current form to yet another level.

Errani, one of the scrappiest, determined players out there – that might be code for “vertically challenged”, but it’s also the quality that has made her able to compete with the giants on the WTA Tour for so many years – had no answers.

None. Zero.

Point after point, she watched winners whiz by her, unable to so much as get one square inch of racquet on them.

At one point late in the second set, when Bouchard made a rare unforced error into the net, Errani even let out a loud “Allez!” to celebrate.

It's a bit of a tennis no-no to celebrate after your opponent's error; but that point, she could probably almost be forgiven the breach of etiquette.

Typically, Errani is the one who doesn’t make errors. But on Sunday, the far more aggressive Bouchard managed to hit 33 winners while making it seem as though she was taking very little risk.

It was impressive.

“She likes to go cross-court as well, and I really wanted to take it down the line. I think I was able to do that, and it was just really important to try and finish the points because she always gets that extra ball back,” Bouchard said. “She did a few times, some good passing shots, but I just knew I had to keep moving forward and really try to finish it.”

Asked to compare her current form to that which she displayed during her semi-final run at the Australian Open, Bouchard said it was “similar”.

“I think I have improved in a few areas, as well. I had a few weeks of training after Australia and between some of the tournaments I played, so I think I have improved on my serve a little bit,” she said.

Bouchard has coach Nick Saviano back with her in Indian Wells, for the first time since that Australian Open; she went to the Middle East (Doha and Dubai) on her own, and mother Julie was at the Acapulco event last week.

It appears, from the outside, that he was a tremendous help all week in appeasing whatever little mini-dramas were going on, helping her to get back on an even keel and in her best form to compete.

Next up for the 20-year-old is another top-10 player – a more recent arrival in that exclusive club – Simona Halep of Romania.

It’s a tremendous opportunity for both players to make a deep run at this event, which is a Premier event, second in ranking points and prize money only to the four Grand Slams.

The winner would play either Aussie Casey Dellacqua (whom Bouchard defeated on Centre Court in Australia in the third round) or Lauren Davis (her second-round victim in Oz) to reach the semifinals.

That’s the section of the draw left wide open by the fact that an injured Victoria Azarenka lost her first match earlier in the week.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting