Eugenie Bouchard out of Rogers Cup after first-round loss to Belgium's Mertens

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Eugenie Bouchard out of Rogers Cup after first-round loss to Belgium's Mertens

MONTREAL â€" Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard is out of the Rogers Cup after a 6-2, 6-4 first-round loss to Elise Mertens of Belgium on Tuesday.

The 129th-ranked Bouchard lost the match in one hour and 34 minutes in front of her hometown fans as she dropped to 4-11 all time at the Rogers Cup.

The Westmount, Que., native started the match poorly. She was broken three times and dropped the first five games of the first set.

The 24-year-old showed signs of life though, winning back-to-back games in the first set before losing 6-2. She started the second set by winning her first three games.

But Bouchard’s service game let her down the entire match, and it allowed Mertens to claw her way back into the second set.

The Canadian was broken twice in the second, for a total of five times in the match, as Mertens won the next five games en route to victory.

https://twitter.com/CoupeRogers/status/1026956156223275008

Bouchard connected on just 54 per cent of her first serves and won 56 per cent of her first service points.

The 15th-ranked Mertens, who is making her Rogers Cup debut, will now face either Shuai Zhang of China (No. 32) or qualifier Barbora Krejcikova (No. 232) of the Czech Republic in the second round.

Bouchard has not beaten a top-20 player since defeating Angelique Kerber at the Madrid Open in May 2017.

Earlier Tuesday, Maria Sharapova advanced to the second round with a 6-1, 6-2 victory over qualifier Sesil Karatantcheva of Bulgaria in a match that began Monday evening.

Play resumed under the afternoon sun with Sharapova leading 4-1 in the first set after heavy rain and lightning forced organizers to suspend the match late Monday following a three-hour rain delay.

“I guess the weather is not something that anyone can control,” said Sharapova. “The players want to play. The fans want to watch tennis. At the end of the day, I think everybody understands it’s for a player’s safety. A tournament is only better when you have healthy players competing.”

Elise Mertens, of Belgium, returns to Eugenie Bouchard, of Canada, during first round of play at the Rogers Cup tennis action in Montreal, Tuesday August 7, 2018. Paul Chiasson / THE CANADIAN PRESS

Sharapova, making her first Rogers Cup appearance since 2014, picked up exactly where she left off. She won six straight games after the restart and needed only 36 minutes to win the second set.

The 31-year-old fired three aces and only committed two double faults to her opponent’s 11.

“Would have loved to finish last night to get a break today, but that’s not how things work,” said Sharapova. “You have to adjust. I think I did a good job of finishing the job today.”

The Russian is now 5-0 all-time against the 229th-ranked Karatantcheva, who was playing in her first WTA main draw in more than a year.

Sharapova, ranked 22nd in the world, will face Daria Kasatkina of Russia (No. 12) or Maria Sakkari of Greece (No. 31) in the second round.

Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko was eliminated after a 6-7 (6), 6-1, 6-2 loss to Britain’s Johanna Konta.

Ostapenko, the 11th seed in Montreal, committed 10 double faults in the match while struggling with her serve as she came crashing out in the first round at the Rogers Cup for the third straight year.

Konta fired eight aces while committing just three double faults.

In other early matches, Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands made quick work of Carol Zhao of Richmond Hill, Ont., winning 6-1, 6-2 while world No. 8 Petra Kvitova outlasted Anett Kontaveit of Estonia 6-3, 6-4.

Belgium’s Alison Van Uytvanck cruised past Russian qualifier Sofya Zhuk 6-1, 6-2 and Sorana Cirstea beat Monica Niculescu 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 in an all-Romanian matchup.

The 10th seed Julia Goerges of Germany came from a set down to beat qualifier Lucie Safarova 2-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Montreal’s Francoise Abanda was in action later Tuesday.

Notes: Garbine Muguruza, the tournament’s eighth seed, withdrew with an arm injury. Puerto Rico’s Monica Puig took her spot in the main draw.

Source: Google News Belgium | Netizen 24 Belgium

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