Drama is what’s the WTA about and it’s probably going to happen with the winner of this match, Alize Cornet and Eugenie Bouchard, who could face Maria Sharapova in the second round. Both Cornet and Bouchard have made pretty hard remarks on Sharapova getting wildcards, Bouchard even calling her a ‘cheater’. Cornet-Bouchard alone is probably going to be very interesting and I’ll have a preview of the match here.
Alize Cornet (No.43) vs Eugenie Bouchard (No.60)
Overview: With all the fanfare on Eugenie Bouchard calling Sharapova as a ‘cheater’, she could possibly meet Sharapova in the second round and that’ll be very interesting. However she’ll have to first get past Alize Cornet and we’ll come to the Frenchwoman in the while. Bouchard started off the year with a nice run to the semifinals of Sydney, but has not won a single WTA match since the Australian Open. Disappointing losses to Alja Tomljanovic, Annika Beck, Ashleigh Barty, Sara Sorribes Tormo, Victoria Duval (in the ITF) and Jana Cepelova suggests that she is in pretty bad form.
Well Cornet hasn’t been that too good either in 2017. After a promising Australian swing where she made the final of Brisbane, her best result was in Monterrey, where she made the quarterfinals. Cornet has had some injury problems so far, and coming to her beloved clay she’ll want to turn that around. She has performed her best in Madrid before where she had beaten Simona Halep, and will definitely want to reproduce that form once again.
Head to head: The pair’s head to head are tied with 2 wins apiece, but Cornet won their previous encounter in last year’s Hobart final in a 6-1 6-2 thumping. Cornet also won their previous match on clay, in Strasbourg.
Thoughts: Although both have been struggling in the previous months, both players have produced their best on the clay before. (Bouchard made it to the French Open semifinals, in 2014 in case you forgot) This matchup has been a fanfare of drama and should be one to watch! I’m going for Cornet a little more, even though she seemed to be struggling with injury in Rabat. Don’t really think Bouchard can capitalise on that too, and Cornet probably should be heading towards a ninth win of 2017.
Prediction: Cornet to defeat Bouchard in three