Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Petra Kvitova and Eugenie Bouchard meet in Wimbledon women's final

LONDON — Billie Jean King believes Wimbledon finalists Petra Kvitova and Eugenie Bouchard are creating one of the most exciting times in women's tennis in decades.

King ought to know. She helped start the Women's Tennis Association more than 40 years ago.

Kvitova, 24, of the Czech Republic, won the 2011 Wimbledon title. She faces Bouchard, 20, who plays in her — and Canada's — first Grand Slam final today.

They're from a generation of fitter and stronger players who have "closed the gap on power and belief" with their older contemporaries, King said at a news conference. "They have definitely caught up. Women have more confidence overall. Serena (Williams) is not in the same place as she was; she's a little more vulnerable. The men have had their 'Top 4.' Now we've got a lot of younger women who want to be here. They like the showtime."

WHAT A YEAR: Bouchard is the only woman to have advanced to all three Grand Slam tournament semifinals this year, and now she's taken it another step. She's received support from her home country, prime ministers and mayors, along with TV's The Big Bang Theory actor Jim Parsons. She finished 2013 ranked 32nd, and she's projected to improve to No. 7, the highest for a Canadian woman. She would be the youngest Grand Slam champion since Maria Sharapova won the 2006 U.S. Open at 19.

ONLY MEETING: Kvitova and Bouchard have played just once. They faced off on hardcourts in Toronto, with Kvitova an easy winner, 6-3, 6-2.

NEW GENERATION: The final is the first to feature two players born in the 1990s. Kvitova is the only player born in that decade to win a Grand Slam — her 2011 Wimbledon title — and Bouchard is the fourth player born in the '90s to reach a Slam final. The others are French Open runnerup Simona Halep (who lost to Bouchard in the semifinals here) and former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki, the 2009 U.S. Open runnerup.

BOUCHARD'S PLAN: "(Kvitova) has good shots which are very powerful compared perhaps to opponents I played in the tournament. I think she will try to attack, but I will try to do the same thing. I think both of us will try to put pressure on each other. I think it will be important to start the points well on serve and on return. It will be the first shots that decide the match."

Petra Kvitova and Eugenie Bouchard meet in Wimbledon women's final 07/04/14 [Last modified: Friday, July 4, 2014 9:44pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Joe Maddon gets warm reception in return to the Trop

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The night was arranged to honor former Rays manager Joe Maddon in his first visit back to the Trop, and the standing ovation from the bipartisan crowd and scoreboard video tribute seemed proper acknowledgments of his hefty role in the Rays' success during his nine-year stint.

    Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon (70) talks with reporters during a press conference before the start of the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.
  2. Rays vs. Cubs, 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Cubs

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM; 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays' Blake Snell poses for a picture during the team's photo day at baseball spring training in Port Charlotte, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Tuesday's Rays-Cubs game

    The Heater

    Chris Archer's night ended with his 11th loss, but he and the Rays should feel good about his six solid innings. After the forearm tightness scare in Chicago, he had two rough outings (15 hits, 11 runs, seven innings), so Tuesday was a reassuring rebound.

  4. At 6-8, Lightning prospect Oleg Sosunov comes with, and needs, a high ceiling

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — When Hall of Famer Phil Esposito first saw Lightning prospect Oleg Sosunov, he joked that the 6-foot-8 defenseman could reach the Amalie Arena ceiling.

    Lightning 6-foot-8 defenseman Oleg Sosunov competes in the preseason opener. Phil Esposito jokes that Sosunov can reach the ceiling at Amalie Arena.
  5. Jones: Rays' Kevin Cash doesn't mind following in Joe Maddon's steps

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — On this particular night, he's the other guy. He's like a talk-show guest scooted to the end of the couch. He is Kevin Cash. And the Rays manager is standing in the home dugout at Tropicana Field.

    ST. PETERSBURG, FL - SEPTEMBER 17: Manager Kevin Cash (L) of the Tampa Bay Rays reacts to action during the game against the Boston Red Sox at Tropicana Field on September 17, 2017 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Joseph Garnett Jr./Getty Images) 700012494