You could say both of these players (Eugenie Bouchard and Dominika Cibulkova) needed a great tournament with Bouchard struggling with consistency and form this year whereas Cibulkova has been returning from a while out injured and even making the fourth round in my opinion would be a success for either player as to get momentum is this busy end of the season momentum is important as the big tournaments come very quickly.
The year after a brilliantly year is a tough on the tour as the breakthrough year is about building the ranking with little points to defend however the year after the expectation levels go from outsider to contender so defending these points is tough. On the Road To Singapore right now Bouchard is down at 46 and it would probably take something extraordinary for her to qualify for Singapore and defend her points there. So far this year Bouchard has a win/loss of 11/17 and compared to this time last year it was 39/17 after round two of the US Open so she has lost the same number of matches but to date has lost 28 more than she did this time last year.
Cibulkova is a former top ten player and had gradually continued to climb to the rankings and is now at 50 in the world going into the tournament. She faced a difficult round one match against Ivanovic who I expected to go far in the tournament but came through it and I believe in the second round came from a set and a break down to defeat Pegula and is showing that tremendous fight she has from the back of the court.
This has been the first time since Indian Wells in March 6 months ago that Bouchard has won two matches in a row which is incredible! Bouchard has done well to win her first two matches and to get the wins is great but I don’t think she has played very well at all and I do expect Cibulkova to have a bit too much for Bouchard who despite these wins has hit an incredible 84 unforced errors in 5 sets of tennis which is on average 16.8 a set which is why I don’t think she will get away with against a better opponent.
Something that did stand out for me in the opening two rounds is the success Bouchard has got from going to the net. Going to the net is so effective but surprisingly not used that often by players but Bouchard has won 40/61 points at the net in two matches which is very good!
Surprisingly these two players have never met before on the tour however I am expecting a close match in this one but I expect Cibulkova to edge it!