Eugenie Bouchard propels Canada to Fed Cup playoffs
Montreal tennis star downs Serbia's Dolonc 6-0, 6-3
Montreal's Eugenie Bouchard beat Serbia's Vesna Dolonc 6-0, 6-3 to power Canada to victory in its Fed Cup World Group II tie Sunday.
The win gave Canada a 3-0 lead in the best-of-five tie at the Claude-Robillard Sports Complex.
Canada will advance to the World Group playoffs, giving the team a chance to advance from the World Group II to a higher division that includes the world's eight best teams. Canada's next opponent hasn't yet been determined.
Leading 5-3 in the second set, Bouchard, 19, sent the No. 117-ranked Dolonc the wrong way to secure the advantage. She then cemented the victory with an ace.
"I was happy I could stay with her and fight," said Bouchard. "When it counted, I did what I needed to do."
The No. 19-ranked Bouchard needed less than 20 minutes to take the first set, surrendering just seven points in the process.
But Dolonc put up a fight in the second set, breaking Bouchard in the first game. She then held serve to force a 2-2 tie.
"It was a closer battle (in the second). She came up with some good points, and I had a few unforced errors," said Bouchard. "I tried to win one point at a time and stay in the moment. And that helped me."
Bouchard went on to win four of the next five games to seal the victory.
"The tempo was very high," said Dolonc of the 59-minute match. "There was constant pressure on me. I was too late all the time. It was really quick. It was tough to find my game."
Bouchard beat 24-year-old Dolonc 6-3, 6-1 in their only previous encounter in the qualifying draw in Cincinnati last year.
Bouchard's victory meant teammate Aleksandra Wozniak of Blainville, Que., could skip her singles match. Instead, the tie was scheduled to end with Toronto's Sharon Fichman and Ottawa's Gabriela Dabrowski playing Jovana Jaksic and Nina Stojanovic in doubles.
On Saturday, Bouchard beat the No. 149-ranked Jaksic 6-1, 6-0 while Wozniak defeated Dolonc 7-5, 2-6, 6-4 to give Canada its 2-0 advantage.
"They're both on fire," said Dolonc of Bouchard and Wozniak. "Aleksandra yesterday had a great match. And Bouchard, obviously, is at a very high level now. She's improved dramatically."