It was just two years ago that the Canadian burst on the scene to win the junior championship at Wimbledon. Now after making the semifinals in each of this season’s Grand Slams, she’s made the big time.
“What I’ve seen from last year to this year is that being a top-16 seed, I can go into the members’ locker-room. I was really, really excited about that this year,” Bouchard told reporters Sunday.
“My name is on there. So it’s pretty cool. I was excited about it,” she said. “People are saying, ‘Whatever, it’s just a locker-room,’ but I like to appreciate little things like that. You get a bit of priority on practice courts. You definitely feel taken care of.”
Oddsmakers are taking notice of Bouchard too. They had her priced around +2000 to win Wimbledon – eighth on the odds board – despite a tough draw that will see her up against Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova before the quarterfinals.
But she’s composed enough now to know there isn’t any point in looking down the road just yet. First she has to get past veteran Daniela Hantuchova. Bouchard heads into this opening match on Monday as a big -410 favorite.
These new odds Bouchard is seeing make a lot of sense too. Those bargain prices you once saw on her at the beginning of the year are long gone now that she’s showing such composure on the court. Before, Bouchard would often start quickly but then begin wilting after a couple of missed shots. These days her tenacity on the court has her winning tough points and putting pressure on her opponents.
“I think I’m coming into the tournament with more confidence than last year and feeling like I belong,” Bouchard told reporters. “That’s already a big step. I’m still kind of in awe of everything. Every time I come to any Grand Slam I’m so happy to be there. But I think my game is much more solid. I can control the points better, dictate the points better. The past week or so I’ve worked on my serve a little bit, and I think it’s improved a lot.”