Canada’s Bouchard lost to the Russian superstar 6-3, 6-2, falling one step shy of her semifinal placing a year ago. The 20-year old had been dominant throughout the tournament, but struggled with her return game in her final two matches, which is almost always unforgiveable against Sharapova.
The match began with a service break for Sharapova, forcing Bouchard to chase from the opening game. It was soon 2-0 for the Russian after she held serve. Bouchard’s recovery started in earnest in the third game as she adjusted to the power of Sharapova’s returns. Nonetheless, the Russian was able to break Bouchard one more time to win the opening set 6-3.
The players traded service games in the second set before Sharapova won another break point and consolidated for a big 4-1 advantage. Bouchard tried to take advantage of a few looks but the world number two was having none of it, closing out the match with as much power and determination she possessed in the opening minutes of the match.
More to come.