All Canadian players in the main portion of the 2015 US Open are now out of the tournament.
The last Canadian holdout after injuries pushed Milos Raonic, then Eugenie Bouchard out of New York in singles, was Daniel Nestor with French partner Edouard Roger-Vasselin. The men’s doubles number nine team lost to the sixth seed partnership of Rohan Bopanna and Florin Mergea 6-7 (7-4), 6-4, 6-3 on Monday.
Nestor and Roger-Vasselin had made it to the final of the Rogers Cup last month in their temporary partnership. A handful of top Canadian juniors remain in New York to compete in the undercard, however all top tennis stars from the north are now gone from the US Open (daily stories below).
Sunday, September 6
The seventh day at the 2015 US Open brought double bad news for fans of Canadian tennis in New York.
The last remaining singles player from Canada, Eugenie Bouchard, had to withdraw from her fourth round match against Roberta Vinci of Italy due to a concussion. It’s the third straight match from which Bouchard had to pull out since suffering a fall on Friday night.
After struggling through 2015 following a coaching change, Bouchard had strung together three consecutive victories in New York, first time she managed that feat this year since the Australian Open in January (just prior to hiring Sam Sumyk as coach). At the Rogers Cup in Toronto last month, Bouchard mentioned she was feeling more like her old self and felt a turnaround was near. At the US Open she showed glimpses of the top-five player she became in 2014 with wins over Alison Riske, Polona Hercog and Dominika Cibulkova (more on these matches below).
Adil Shamasdin’s run at the US Open ended in the third round with Austrian partner Philipp Oswald. The pair lost to Jamie Murray (Great Britain) and John Peers (Australian) 6-4, 6-4, leaving only Daniel Nestor as the lone Canadian in the main portion of the 2015 tournament.
Saturday, September 5
Daniel Nestor was the only Canadian who saw any action on Saturday (Day 6) at the US Open, with Eugenie Bouchard suffering a head injury.
Men’s, women’s & mixed doubles
Daniel Nestor with partner Edouard Roger-Vasselin of France have continued to impress since coming together at the Rogers Cup in Montreal last month. The pair won their second round US Open men’s doubles match 6-2, 7-5 over Frenchaman Jeremy Chardy and Poland’s Lukasz Kubot.
Eugenie Bouchard was scheduled to play two second round doubles matches on Saturday, however, a locker room slip on Friday night caused her to suffer a concussion. Bouchard withdrew from both the women’s and mixed doubles contests, which also put her availability for singles competition in doubt.
Friday, September 4
Eugenie Bouchard has made it to the fourth round of the US Open in women’s singles, but an ailing Milos Raonic couldn’t do the same on Friday (Day 5) in New York.
Up against a speedy, relentless competitor in Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia, Eugenie Bouchard met a player who was arguably her toughest test of the US Open this year and came out the winner 7-6 (11-9), 4-6, 6-3.
The players exchanged break points in the opening set before heading to the tiebreak. When Bouchard thought she had it won at 7-6, a challenge from Cibulkova proved that her return was in play, allowing the tiebreak to continue before the Canadian made the first set result official.
Bouchard broke Cibulkova to go up 3-1, but then lost the next four games to trail the Slovak 5-3 in the second set. The Canadian had chances to put the set on level terms but couldn’t break the Slovak again, dropping the set.
Cibulkova started the deciding set up a break, continuing to fire powerful returns past Bouchard, who answered by stealing the next service game by taking advantage of a couple of errors. Bouchard went up 3-1 again, but this time consolidated to create some distance between her and Cibulkova before serving out the match. It’s the first time since the Australian Open in January that Bouchard has won three matches in the same tournament in 2015.
Roberta Vinci of Italy is next for Bouchard.
Milos Raonic tried to play through a back injury against Feliciano Lopez of Spain in the third round, losing 6-2, 7-6, 6-3. The Canadian was nowhere close to being himself, struggling through just about every point having also taken a medical timeout. It’s the first time Lopez has beaten Raonic in a Grand Slam.
Men’s, women’s and mixed doubles
Adil Shamasdin continues to enjoy his US Open with partner Philipp Owald of Austria. They won their second round match over Marcus Daniell (New Zealand) and Jonathan Murray (Great Britain) 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-3).
Following her singles result, Bouchard teamed up with Australian Nick Kyrgios in mixed doubles on Friday evening and won again, beating Elina Svitolina (Ukraine) and Artem Sitak (New Zealand) 5-7, 6-3, 10-3.
Thursday, September 3
Canadians only saw doubles action on Thursday (Day 4) at the US Open in New York, with two of three players coming out as winners.
Men’s and women’s doubles
Adil Shamasdin with Austrian partner Philipp Oswald pulled off a big upset in men’s doubles, beating the 10th seeded Alexander Peya (Austria) and Bruo Soares (Brazil) 6-3, 6-3.
In the women’s bracket, Eugenie Bouchard and Elena Vesnina of Russia got the better of American Madison Brengle and Tatjana Maria of Germany 7-5, 6-2. Canadian NCAA player Erin Routliffe suffered a different fate from Bouchard, losing her match with American partner Maya Jansen 6-2, 6-1 against Raquel Kops-Jones and Abigail Spears, broth from the United States.
Wednesday, September 2
Canadian tennis players wrapped up Day 3 at the US Open in New York on Wednesday with big wins arriving in singles, but just one of three doubles players moved on to the next round of the last Grand Slam in the 2015 tennis season.
Despite a bad back – on which he had medical attention during the match – Milos Raonic is through to the third round of the US Open after beating Spain’s Fernando Verdasco in four sets, 6-2, 6-4, 6-7 (7-5), 7-6 (7-1).
The Canadian played through discomfort in his opening round match two days ago (more on this by scrolling down below). Instead of a foot injury that has hobbled him much of the season, it’s a back injury that’s flaring up for Raonic of late.
Nonetheless, Raonic won the first two sets 6-2 and 6-4, holding serve each game while breaking his Spanish opponent on three occasions. There were no more break points won rest of the match, with the next two sets going to tiebreak.
In the third set Verdasco took advantage of two minibreaks (to one for Raonic) to win the tiebreak 7-5. In the fourth set tiebreak, Raonic jumped up to a massive lead by taking minibreaks off the first two Verdasco serves, before winning it 7-1 to take the match.
Raonic – the 10th seed in New York – will face another Spaniard in Feliciano Lopez in the third round. Lopez is the 18th seed and will provide a stiffer test for the ailing Canadian who is clearly playing through some pain.
Eugenie Bouchard’s aim to finish her 2015 season on a strong note received another boost on Wednesday, when she beat Polona Hercog of Slovenia 6-3, 6-7 (7-2), 6-2.
Despite going down an early break point in the opening frame for the second straight match, Bouchard remained calm and came back to even up matters against Hercog, before winning a second break point and serving out a 6-3 first set lead.
A back-and-forth second set saw Bouchard struggle to hold serve, but so did Hercog. The players combined to win six break points (three each). The Slovenian though, took a commanding lead in the tiebreak and didn’t look back, winning it 7-2 to even the match.
A long second game in the deciding set seemed to be the tipping point for which way the match would go. Each player had two chances to win the game, which Bouchard put away on her second chance, stealing a service game from Hercog. From that point forward, Bouchard was dominant the next two games to take a comfortable 4-0 lead before winning the set and match on serve.
The victory on Wednesday marks the first time Bouchard has won two matches in a tournament since Indian Wells back in March. Her third round opponent will be Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia, who upset world number seven Ana Ivanovic in the first round.
Men’s and women’s doubles
In men’s doubles, two Canadians won first round matches with their respective partners.
Recent Rogers Cup doubles finalists Daniel Nestor and Frenchman Edouard Roger-Vasselin advanced to the second round over Andre Sa (Brazil) and Chris Guccione (Australia) 6-4, 6-3. The news wasn’t good for fans of Vasek Pospisil and American partner Jack Sock though. The North Americans lost to Leonardo Mayer (Argentina) and Joao Sousa (Portugal) 4-6, 7-6 (10-8), 7-5 in the first round, ending Pospisil’s frustrating US Open (more on his singles match below).
On the women’s side, Pan Am Games champion Gabriela Dabrowski and Polish partner Alicja Rosolska lost their first round match to the Ukrainian Kichenok sisters Lyudmyla and Niadiia 2-6, 6-4, 6-3.
Monday, August 31
Canadian singles players at the US Open made it two of three wins collectively in the first round on Monday, with Milos Raonic and Eugenie Bouchard advancing, while Vasek Pospisil suffered an emotional loss.
In the final Grand Slam tournament of the season, Raonic was the first Canadian through to the second round, beating American Tim Smyczek in straight sets 6-4, 7-6 (10-8), 6-1. Raonic showed some small signs of discomfort as he continues to recover from a foot injury. Postmatch, the Canadian said of his US Open preparation that, “it’s been more about managing injuries, getting healthy. I’m as close to that right now as I can be.”
Raonic has lowered his playing demands to help heal his ailing foot at a faster pace. If he showed any rust, he admits it’s from a “lack of matches” but “the body held up pretty good” on Monday. His next opponent will be unseeded Fernando Verdasco of Spain. Raonic is the 10th seed at the US Open.
Pospisil had a more complicated match against Andreas Haider-Maurer, losing to the Austrian after cramping up in the fourth set, dropping the decision 6-4, 3-6, 6-7 (7-0), 6-0, 6-1. Up two sets to one by dominating the second set tiebreak, a knee injury to Haider-Maurer made a Pospisil victory look likely. Then disaster struck.
Unable to win the opening game of the fourth set despite a 40-0 advantage, Pospisil took an awkward step in the second that seemed to trigger a series of muscle cramps. Down 2-0 in the fourth, he registered just one point for the rest of the set, receiving medical attention multiple times. In the fifth set, anger and frustration continued at his physical state, Pospisil making his corner strongly aware of his unhappiness with conditioning before losing the decider 6-1.
Two big upsets on her side of the draw has opened things up for Bouchard, who is trying to return to her 2014 form during a difficult 2015 season. She took the first step to a potentially long run in New York, beating Alison Riske of the United States in straight sets 6-4, 6-3, a win that had observers remarking that Bouchard is continuing to look more like her former self in recent weeks.
“It feels really good to (win) at a Grand Slam as well, at US Open no less, so I’m so excited to play another match in front of you guys,” Bouchard told fans of facing down her up and down season with a spirited victory against a stubborn opponent in an hour and 47 minutes.
Since firing her 2015 coach Sam Sumyk after Wimbledon in a bid to regain the uncompromising, instinctive play that made her a force in women’s tennis, Bouchard has recently linked up with 12-time singles Grand Slam winner Jimmy Connors for instruction.
“His experience is like no other, so I’m pretty grateful,” Bouchard told fans in New York after her win over Riske in an on-court interview, jokingly asking Connors on the mic how he thinks she performed, and that they’ll speak on the phone later.
Polona Hercog of Slovenia is next up for Bouchard, her section of the draw now devoid of seventh seed Ana Ivanovic and no. 10 Carla Suarez Navarro – both players falling in the first round at their respective matches.
Mens, women’s & mixed doubles
Several Canadians – including Pospisil and Bouchard – are scheduled to play in doubles this week, although none were in action on Monday.