The year 2014 can be described as the year of Eugenie Bouchard. The then 20 year old Canadian was the tennis sensation of the year. She reached the semis at the AusOpen, the semis of the French Open, the finals at Wimbledon and lost in the fourth round of the US Open. You can argue that the lost final of Wimbledon where she got schooled by Petra Kvitova losing 6-3, 6-0 broke her fighting spirit and started her descent to the slump she is currently in. It is 2015 now and Genie has lost 9 out of her last 10 matches. She is desperately looking for her form that brought her the name and fame of last year while trying to adjust to her new circumstances. But with the Australian Open gone and the French Open left her stranded in the first round. You have to wonder if she can defend her points at the next Grand Slams. For instance what are her winning odds at Wimbledon? Or the last Grandslam of the year, the US Open?
According to Bouchard it is due to the pressure and that she put a lot of pressure on herself to get the desired results but concluded that that is not the way it works for her. One of the consequences of that pressure is that she thinks too much on the court where she should just play. Next to that she changed coach and started to do more offcourt activities which includes modeling. All that is taking time to get used to.
The media attention is another one of the consequences she has been dealing with after her succesful 2014. For instance, she refused to shake hands with her opponent in the FedCup match versus Romania. The critisism in the media was harsh but spot on. It is a game after all and good sportsmanship comes with it.
Last season she was followed by her fan club called “The Genie Army“. They followed her everywhere in red and white and would throw teddy bears and whatnots on the court after her matches. We haven’t seen the Genie Army in Holland and they are missed. Because it looks like Bouchard could use a morale booster during her match.
The WTA named her the Most Improved Player of 2014 but that same WTA is trying convulsively to protect her from getting any negative questions during press conferences.
Bouchard is trying to keep her story positive as well and wants to focus on the 2015 season because 2014…well that is so last year. And let’s hope that that is enough for her to get back to the top.