Big Bang Theory’s Jim Parsons is a fan of the plucky Canuck from Westmount 

TERRANCE GAVAN

[share title=”Title” facebook=”true” twitter=”true” google_plus=”true” linkedin=”true” pinterest=”true” reddit=”true” email=”true”]

Canadian Press: LONDON — Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard advanced to the quarter-finals of Wimbledon on Monday after defeating France’s Alize Cornet 7-6 (5), 7-5.

 

Bouchard, the No. 13 seed from Westmount, Que., continued her romp through the 2014 Grand Slam draws after breakthrough semifinals at the Australian Open and French Open.

 

The 2012 junior Wimbledon winner will next play the winner of a match between fifth seed Maria Sharapova and ninth seed Angelique Kerber of Germany.

Composure, delicate touch, development and mindset.

Eugenie Bouchard is an emerging power on the women’s international tennis circuit.

There is a calmness and serenity there. An aggravated and unstinting will to overcome. It is what makes Genie Bouchard special. Watching her growth in a short span of time is revealing. Bouchard does what most champions do. She is fearless, uncompromising and sure handed in the clinch. She plays extremely well. But a lot of players do that. What separates the champion from the pack? It’s that inner culmination of will. The will to summon her best when called.

I have watched Bouchard over three majors, – the Aussie Open, The French and now Wimbledon – and there remains a certain je ne sais quoi quality in Bouchard’s game. A maturity that belies her years.

It was Martina Navratilova, a not too shabby harbinger of commentary, who said that Bouchard has a champion’s edge.

Mauturity on court that belies her age. The Westmount Wunderkind is  playing wonderfully in the slams this year. CP Photo!!

Mauturity on court that belies her age. The Westmount Wunderkind is playing wonderfully in the slams this year. CP Photo!!

She comes “big” when the pressure is on.

She breaks when it’s necessary.

She plays the big points without fear.

That’s the definition of mental toughness.

What most people don’t realize is that Bouchard hits the ball deep. The men’s game is all about power. The women’s game is all about depth. Men can get away with short balls (and we mean balls that land between the net and the service line on the court) on occasion if they can hit out on every ball. In women’s tennis (on the tour) advantage is gained by yielding no advantage to the opponent.

Genie Bouchard hits deep and gets into trouble only when that depth is broached by an aggressor who can draw her off the baseline with angled shots or deep returns. Bouchard plays like Andre Agassiz, Jimmy Connors or Maria Sharipova. She takes the ball aggressively on the rise and she challenges opponents by her fearlessness in the pinch.

It can be nerve wracking to play a youngster like Bouchard because she commands her spot on the court and she is not bothered by set status. She hits out, hits the ball with depth and she takes balls early. Her return of serve is good and getting better. She moves well and she is getting more comfortable at the net. She is not afraid to come inside the baseline to retrieve second serves.

But it’s that depth of returns that places her prominently on the verge of a breakthrough in a grand-slam.

Depth trumps speed. Depth trumps power. Depth trumps aggressiveness.

Add that to the positivity and calm she brings to every match? And you have a youngster who may just possess what it takes to become what she is becoming already.

A champion.

[container] Get Gav @terrancegavan on twitter [/container]

[share title=”Title” facebook=”true” twitter=”true” google_plus=”true” linkedin=”true” pinterest=”true” reddit=”true” email=”true”]

[recent_posts type=”post, portfolio” category=”” count=”1, 2, 3, 4″ offset=”1, 2, 3…” orientation=”horizontal, vertical” no_image=”true” fade=”true”]