After becoming the first Canadian since 2000 to reach the Round of 16 at the Australian Open, Eugenie Bouchard did one better as she has now advanced to the quarter-finals in Melbourne. With the win, she makes even more noise becoming the first Canadian in 22 years to reach the quarters of any Grand Slam.
On Sunday, the 19-year-old was up against Australian Casey Dellacqua and despite a tough start losing 6-7 (5-7), Bouchard cruised in the next two sets, winning 6-2, 6-0. En route to her win, the 30th-seeded Bouchard made six aces, 28 winners and six breaks of serve.
Speaking of her opening-set loss, Bouchard was able to elaborate on how she felt:
"I tried to stay calm after the first set and focus on what I have to do in the point. I felt I started to play well. I stayed in the moment after a shaky first set and felt pretty good out there."
But now, the 30th-seeded Bouchard, who can move as high as 21st in the WTA rankings when this tournament finishes, is set to prepare for her quarter-final matchup on Tuesday. There, she will face another pleasant story from the Aussie Open in former world No. 1 Ana Ivanovic.
The Serbian is coming off a stunning upset of No. 1 Serena Williams and despite her struggles a few years back, Ivanovic has certainly played with plenty of upside since then - and that's something Bouchard will not take for granted.
"Ana plays aggressively and I'm looking forward to doing the same," Bouchard said. "No one's going to give it to me, so it's going to be a good match."
The Montrealer also let it be known of her determination to make her mark at this tournament:
"I'm feeling a lot of support from Canada," she said. "I'm excited to keep going and getting better."
A win on Tuesday will certainly do wonders for Bouchard but we'll have to see how she fares against the Serbian Ivanovic. Either way, not since Patricia Hy-Boulais at the 1992 US Open has a Canadian woman made it so far in a Grand Slam and no one in Canada is taking that for granted.