Chennai, : Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard quelled a second set fightback from India’s Karman Kaur Thandi to win 6-2, 7-6 in the round of 16 and book a spot in the singles quarterfinal of the Chennai Open WTA 250 tennis tournament here on Wednesday.
With Thandi’s exit, the Indian challenge in the singles draw came to an end. The country’s No.1 Ankita Raina had gone down to Tatjana Maria in round one on Tuesday.
Bouchard was untroubled for a major part of the first set and looked set to run away with it before the Indian No.2 fought back and won two games. Inconsistency cost Thandi as the former world No.5 Canadian closed out the set 6-2. After storming to a one-set lead rather easily, the former Wimbledon finalist Bouchard was made to work hard by Thandi, cheered by the home crowd.
From 2-2, the 24-year old Indian won three games on the trot and looked set to push the match into the decider. She secured the much-needed break in the fifth game to take the lead and looked in command before losing the plot. Thandi served well and the forehand, her strong point, helped win points consistently in the second set before errors crept into her game and saw her surrender the advantage she gained with some enterprising play.
However, she squandered two set points and let Bouchard back into the set. The Canadian, ranked in the 900s now and on a comeback trail, used her experience to bounce back and level at 5-all. After the duo held their respective serves, Bouchard was all over the Indian in the tie-break and quickly wrapped it up 7-2.
Speaking after the match, Bouchard said, “It was fun to play even though the crowd was cheering for her (Thandi).”
Asked how the comeback was going, the Canadian said, “Look…It is one small step at a time.” Meanwhile, two seeded players crashed out in the round of 16. While Sweden’s Rebecca Peterson, the fifth seed, went down in straight sets (4-6, 2-6) to the Czech Republic’s Linda Fruhvirtova, No.6 seed Qian Wang was beaten in straight sets by Nao Hibino of Japan, a qualifier.
Results: Singles (2nd round): Nao Hibino (Japan) beat Qiang Wang (China) 6-2, 6-3; Linda Fruhvirtova (Cze) beat Rebecca Peterson (Sweden) 6-4, 6-2; Eugenie Bouchard (Canada) beat Karman Kaur Thandi (India) 6-2, 7-6.
Doubles: Anastasia Gasanova and Oksana Selekmeteva beat Ankita Raina and Rosalie Van Der Hoek 6-1, 6-4; Arianne Hartono and Olivia Tjandrammulia beat Astra Sharma (Australia) and Ekaternina Yashina 6-3, 6-1; Gabriela Dabrowski (Canada) and L Stefanie (Brazil) (X1) beat Despina Papamichail and Katie Swan 6-4, 6-1.