Bouchard stuns Sharapova to set up Kerber clash, Pliskova out

Asian Championship Sakshi Malik to fight in new weight category in first major outing after Rio

"I would be anxious about myself if I sat here and said I'm pretty happy with losing a tennis match, no matter who I face, no matter what round it is, whether it's the first round or final of a Grand Slam, " she said after losing to Bouchard.

This after Bouchard publicly stated that Sharapova should not be allowed back into tennis following her doping ban.

Sharapova needed to save two break points in the fifth game of the first set but broke Bouchard in the sixth with a brutal forehand victor to lead 4-2.

The Canadian came through a thrilling encounter with Sharapova, winning 7-5 2-6 6-4 after nearly three hours on court.

As a result of the suspension, Sharapova lost her ranking.

"She said: 'Well played, '" Bouchard replied when asked what words were exchanged at the net. "I know what the drill is", she said.

In the second set Sharapova reacted, on 3-2 she broke Bouchard's serve in a pretty odd game: in the first two points Masha hit two back to back backhand winners, then Bouchard hit two double faults in a row. Obviously I had never beaten her before and also given the circumstances.

In the first set's seventh game, the former top-ranked Russian seemed to lose focus as she mistimed a drop shot at 30-30 and let her opponent back into the match by dropping three games in a row. "That's what's going to win me more tournaments and more Grand Slams", she concluded.

Bouchard's victory is made all the more remarkable by the fact that she hadn't won a competitive tennis game in the three and a half months leading up to Madrid.




The Lawn Tennis Association says it is still deciding to whom it will offer wild cards for the grass court season after reports Maria Sharapova would be awarded a place at the Aegon Classic in Birmingham. If we compare the performances from her previous matches this year, the thrilling win against Sharapova was definitely the best tennis she played. She claims a number of players on the tour told her privately they were rooting for her in the match. "I received a lot of support from them and that is why I was so inspired".

The 60 ranked Bouchard's joy was clear for all to see as she jumped for joy at the end of a sapping final set.

Eugenie Bouchard of Canada defeated Maria Sharapova of Russian Federation on day three of the Mutua Madrid Open tennis at La Caja Magica on May 8, 2017 in Madrid, Spain.

Bouchard was 0-4 previously against Sharapova.

Good for Bouchard for calling out Sharapova and even better that she followed it up by beating the five-time Grand Slam champion on the court. What you work for for so many hours every single day is to be on the winning end of matches.

Sharapova said she didn't need extra motivation to play against anybody, adding: "I'm just one of the two players out on the court".

"I mean, look, I would love to be in a position to compete in that event, " she said.

Neither player was prepared to give ground in the decider as Sharapova survived five break points in the fifth game.

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