Eugenie Bouchard beats world No. 2 Angelique Kerber in Rome
The Canadian has had a tough time since reaching Wimbledon final in 2014
Roger Federer casts doubt over his fitness
What a difference a year makes for former Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard.
Barely able to win a match 12 months ago, the 22-year-old Canadian upset Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber in the second round of the Rome Masters Wednesday with a hard-fought 6-1, 5-7, 7-5 victory.
It was Bouchard’s first win over a top 10 player since her breakthrough in 2014, when she was hailed as the next big thing in women’s tennis after reaching the Wimbledon final and semifinals in Australia and at Roland Garros.
The 46th-ranked Bouchard had been leading 6-1, 3-0 when the second-ranked Kerber of Germany, the winner of last month’s clay-court event in Stuttgart, fought back. But in the end it wasn’t enough and Bouchard will now play Czech Barbora Strychova in the third round.
“For sure I’m happy to win, but at the same time I’m disappointed in myself having a lead like I had,” Bouchard told the women’s tour website. “I feel like I could have done better in that second set.”
“My goal next time is if I’m in a position like that is to really be more mentally disciplined and keep pushing. Because these players, if you give them a chance they will come back.”
Bouchard, who sustained a tournament-ending concussion in a locker room fall at the U.S. Open in September, beat former world No. 1 and two-time Rome winner Jelena Jankovic of Serbia in the opening round.
The Canadian reached the finals of Hobart, Australia and Kuala Lumpur at the start of the year but also had two first-round losses. Last year, she clocked up seven first-round exits including at the French Open and Wimbledon.
Roger Federer in doubt
Also in Rome, Roger Federer said he may not play Thursday after beating rising German star Alexander Zverev, 6-3, 7-5.
Federer told a post-match news conference he was “going practice by practice right now. Stopping every 15 minutes to talk with my team.”
The 17-time grand slam winner, who had knee surgery in February, is scheduled to play hard-hitting Austrian Dominic Thiem in the next round.
The French Open, which Federer won in 2009, starts May 22 in Paris. The 34-year-old has played every single major since the 2000 Australian Open.