Eugenie Bouchard: “I really enjoyed school. My favorite class was math class” - UBITENNIS
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Eugenie Bouchard: “I really enjoyed school. My favorite class was math class”



TENNIS WIMBLEDON 2014 – 30th of June. E. Bouchard d. A. Cornet 7-6, 7-5. An interview with Eugenie Bouchard


Q. You were always behind a bit in the first set, but there was always the feeling you definitely weren’t going away. Did you sense she felt that, too?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: Well, she served first. I don’t think there was a break of serve in the first set. It was really just kind of a holding serve the whole first set.

I guess that’s why I was behind all the time. So for me it was important to not think I was behind. I was just focused on my serve, you know, trying to get some good returns in.

You know, we had a tough tiebreak at the end of the set. I’m proud that, you know, I kind of stayed in and, yeah, even though I was kind of playing catch-up, I always felt right there, you know, trying to put pressure all the time.


Q. Down 4-2 in the second set, then 5-3, can you give us a little bit of an idea as to the process you went through to gather yourself to come back?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: I’ve been in situations like that before, so I had full belief and confidence in myself that, you know, I wasn’t out. The second set wasn’t over yet.

I just tried to focus on my serve at 5-3. I played some good points at 5-4.

I think basically, you know, I was able to step up on the important moments.


Q. What was your level of play today? Do you feel it’s the best match you played since the start of Roland Garros?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: I think we played some good tennis today. You know, we had some tough points. She has good wheels. So I had to really try and finish off the point.

You know, I think it made for some really tough, physical points. So that’s definitely the most physical match I’ve played I think this tournament.

But I’m proud that I really, really fought till the end. She’s a good fighter, too. We were really just battling.


Q. Do you consider yourself someone who can compartmentalize pretty well? We see you focus in point to point on the court, and then you come in here wearing a kimono.

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: Yeah, I think, you know, my mental side of tennis has improved over the last few years. I think tennis is very mental, so that’s an important part of it.

Yeah, on the court I really try to have like blinders on and really focus throughout the whole match.

But off the court, of course, it’s fun. That was not planned. I just received it from the Japanese TV crew. They were very nice.

But, you know, life is short, so have fun.


Q. We know about your family’s interest in the Royal family. The Countess of Wessex and a number of other Royals were in the box. Have you played for Royals before? How does it feel?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: First off, I should say parental interest, probably mostly mother. She named us, so I wasn’t really aware of what was going on at that time (smiling).

I did not know who was in the box. I will get that information later for sure.

But I played on Centre Court last year. I was lucky enough to do that. Kate Middleton’s parents were watching us then. That was really exciting.

I think when I went in the Royal Box when I won the juniors, I think the Duke of Kent presented me the trophy. Yes, that’s correct. So I’ve had a few amazing moments like that.

Of course, to play on Centre Court at Wimbledon, it’s the temple of tennis. So a very special moment walking on the court.


Q. You mentioned you improved your mental strength over the last year or two. Have you done anything specific for that? Do you have a mental coach?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: I’m not going to give away my secrets.

The biggest thing I thought when I played my first full year on the tour last year was, you know, it was the first year I didn’t play juniors. I really felt a difference in the level of, you know, how tough it was with my opponents.

So week in, week out, I was playing girls top 100, top 50, sometimes really good ones. I just saw, you know, how tough it was to do that all year long. I played a lot of tournaments last year.

I think just having that experience, just playing week in, week out against, you know, a different level than what I was used to, really just opened my eyes to, Okay, this is what it’s like. I think just by playing so many matches, big matches for me at the time, helped me.


Q. You don’t have a mental coach or do that kind of thing?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: Well, my tennis coach, Nick, you know, helps me with all aspects of the game. We kind of go over every part of it. He helps me with all areas.


Q. The Big Bang Theory is such a wonderful show. What do you love about it?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: It’s my favorite show. It’s a comedy, you know. For me, so many unexpected things, you just burst out laughing. It’s a nice way to relax and have a good time.

It’s less stressful to watch than, say, like a movie on a war or something. It’s pretty relaxing, which I love. Jim Parsons’ character Sheldon is my favorite character. He’s so nerdy. I love the character. He’s so smart and set in his ways. I think the writing of the show is pretty spectacular.


Q. Do you have a little bit a nerd in you?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: I do have a little bit of that in me. When I was in school, I really enjoyed school. My favorite class was math class. I was very determined to try to get 100% on all my math tests. I think that kind of self-discipline translates to tennis.

But, you know, I would have loved to go to school and go to university and things like that. Maybe I’ll do that when I’m 30 and just chill with the 20-year-olds.


Ubaldo Scanagatta and Steve Flink Debate Who Is The Most Selfish: Roland Garros, Nadal or Federer?

Chief Editor Ubaldo Scanagatta catches up with Hall of Famer Steve Flink about tennis during the coronavirus emergency



Federer giving his teammate Nadal some tips during a match at Laver Cup

Roland Garros unilaterally decided to move its tournament to September; what about Wimbledon? The ATP ranking has been frozen and Novak Djokovic will remain n.1 until at least June: should these weeks count in his records? Which tournament will replace Bercy’s Masters 1000?


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EXCLUSIVE: International Tennis Federation Sheds Light On Coronavirus Fight

Ubitennis has been in contact with an official from the governing body about the threat the worldwide virus poses to the sport.



The International Tennis Federation (ITF) has told Ubitennis that health and safety of both players and fans is ‘paramount’ as they continue to deal with the evolving threat posed by Covid-19 (aka Coronavirus).


Tennis tournaments have been disrupted worldwide by the illness, which has claimed the lives of more than 3000 people. Although experts estimate that the death rate from Covid-19 is roughly 1% with the elderly and people with pre-existing medical conditions most at risk. Numerous outbreaks around the world have resulted in various ITF, WTA and ATP events getting cancelled or postponed across South Korea, China and Japan. Meanwhile, the final of the Bergamo Challenger was also recently cancelled due to northern Italy being placed on a lockdown.

As experts try to conjure up with a solution to the outbreaks, sporting organisations have been placed under pressure to do what they can to minimise the disease spreading. Heather Bowler is the Executive Director of Communications for the ITF in London. In an email exchange with, she stressed that the ITF is taking a ‘case by case’ approach to dealing with the impact of Coronavirus on their events.

“The ITF is constantly monitoring the data and information from the relevant authorities about the evolution the virus and reviews the situation on a daily basis. The situation is different in each country.” She said.
“We monitor WHO notifications, review travel restrictions issued by national authorities and consult with security and medical experts to monitor the situation daily. Decisions about specific events continue to be made on a case by case based on at this time.”

The organisation is responsible for all tournaments that don’t fall in the jurisdiction of either the ATP or WTA. This includes Davis/Fed Cup ties, junior tournaments and the Olympic tennis competition. There has been doubts concerning the Tokyo Olympics going ahead on time, but organisers remain determined that this will not be the case.

Italy has one of the biggest outbreaks of Coronavirus. At least 79 people have died, according an update from the country’s civil protection agency on Tuesday. At present there will be at least 10 ITF singles tournaments taking place from now until the end of April there. Four men’s, four women’s and two juniors. All of the professional tournaments will be hosted in Santa Margherita Di Pula, Sardinia. Meanwhile the junior events are set to be played in Florence and Salsomaggiore Terme (Northern Italy).

Despite the threat, the latest stance is that the ITF has no restrictions implemented on those participating in forthcoming events in Italy. Something that could change in the coming weeks.

“We are monitoring the situation on a country by country basis but have not imposed restrictions on players participating in Italian events.” Ubitennis is told.

Italy is expected to host their most prestigious tennis tournament, the Internazionali BNL d’Italia Rome, in May.

Player fears

The uncertainty caused by the Covid-19 outbreak places player’s in an uncomfortable position with many planning months in advance of what their schedule will be. For those ranked outside of the top 100, any last-minute changes will likely result in extra costs and panic about where to play instead.

“If a player makes the decision to withdraw from a tournament citing concerns about COVID-19 they will not be fined.” Bowler stated.

There are ongoing conversations between the ITF and the other governing bodies of tennis concerning the ongoing crises. At present their advice is based on information provided by the World Health Organisation in relation to certain countries. Should it deteriorate any further, there is a chance the ITF could make adjustments to their ‘global policy.’

“We are in regular communication with the ATP and WTA. Currently, the evolution of the virus remains specific to each country and decisions relating to events are made on a case by case basis.” The ITF reiterated.
“We are constantly monitoring the situation and the data provided by WHO, as well as the policies and travel restrictions issued by relevant national authorities, together with advice from expert medical and security advisors. Should the situation evolve and the need arise, we will review a global policy.”

How the ITF could review their global policy is unclear. Although in a worse case scenario, it could advise players against playing in certain countries all together if it was deemed that the threat posed was too substantial.

No fans allowed

This weekend will see countries battle it out in the Davis Cup for a place in the 18-team finals later this year. One of those ties, however will be played in mostly silence with no spectators. Japan will host Ecuador in the city of Miki. In a bid to minimise the Coronavirus threat, organisers have decided to suspend mass gatherings of people. Something that has been seen at other sporting events in the country, which is set to host the Olympics in August.

“Health and safety is paramount. We will make the necessary decisions according to the notifications of the relevant authorities and our expert medical and security advisors. The Japan vs Ecuador tie at the Bourbon Beans Dome in Miki, Japan on 6-7 March will be played without spectators. This decision was taken in consultation with the JTA (Japanese Tennis Association) following advice from Japan Sports Agency and the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare.”

The problem with Covid-19 is the unpredictability at present. It is thought illness originated from a market in Wuhan, which illegally trades wild animals. As experts get to grip with the science behind the illness, the world of sport is left patiently waiting and hoping for a solution sooner rather than later. Especially for the world of tennis, which hosts numerous top tennis tournaments across Asia during the final quarter of the season.

Despite the mayhem, Bowler is confident that the ITF has the relevant resources to deal with whatever occurs in the future.

“We have dealt with many issues that have had widespread impact and most have their specificities. When dealing with such occurrences, we ensure that we monitor the data closely, remain in close contact with the relevant authorities, constantly monitor and provide information, and, in consultation with the relevant experts ensure we are in the best position possible to make the right decisions about our course of action.” She concluded.

Covid-19 Impact on Tournaments

ATP Challenger Tour
-Anning, China (Week of 20 April 2020) – CANCELLED
-Seoul, South Korea (Week of 27 April 2020 – postponed to August)
-Busan, South Korea (week of 4 May 2020 – postponed to August)
-Gwangju, South Korea (Week of 11 May 2020 – postponed to August)
-Madrid, Spain (Week of 23 March 2020) postponed to October following ATP’s agreement to the club’s request.

Women’s Tour
-WTA Xi’an Open (April 13-19) CANCELLED
-WTA Kunming Open (April 27-May 3) CANCELLED

Davis Cup

-China withdrew from competition in February
-Japan to play Ecuador without spectators

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EXCLUSIVE: Daniil Medvedev On His Saudi Arabian Debut, No.1 Dreams And Russia’s Olympic Ban

The US Open finalist sat down with Ubitennis earlier this week.



Within the past 12 months Daniil Medvedev has gone from a promising future prospect to one of the top players in the world of men’s tennis.


Up until June this year the 23-year-old was yet to crack the top 10, win a Masters title or reach the second week of a grand slam event. Then shortly after the conclusion of the Wimbledon championships, Medvedev enjoyed an emphatic period of success to achieve all three of those milestones. Within a three-month period he reached six consecutive finals at tournaments ranging from ATP 250 level to a grand slam. Enabling him to peak at a high of fourth in the world back in September.

Unfortunately for Medvedev, his surge came at price towards the end of his season. Losing in the first round of the Paris Masters and then all three of his matches in his ATP Finals debut. Something he blames on mental tiredness.

Not to be disheartened by the loss, the Russian is back on the court this week. He is one of eight players participating in the brand new Diriyah Tennis Cup. An exhibition tournament in Saudi Arabia, which has on offer $1 million for the champion.

“I do think in the middle of a pre-season a tournament like this is good. You can’t just practice for four weeks without knowing how your game is at the moment. Last year I also participated in one in France (Open de Caen).” Medvedev told about his decision to play.
“This is how we (my team) decided to do the preparation this year and are going to see how it works out.”

Kicking off his campaign on Thursday against Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff, Medvedev enjoyed an emphatic start. Disposing of his rival 6-3, 6-1, in less than an hour. Whilst the prize money is undoubtedly an appeal for all of those taking part, the Russian sees this week as a golden opportunity to evaluate his game.

“It is going to be important to see how my game is right now in the middle of the pre-season. To see what I need to improve more, what I need to work more on with my team.” He explained.
“Obviously after my last season, I have a lot of big expectations for 2020, but first of all I need to stay lucid and take it all match-by-match.”

Future dreams

Medvedev and Gael Monfils – Diriyah Tennis Cup (via Twitter, @DiriyahCup)

Given his recent breakthrough, Medvedev is being mentioned as a potential candidate to one day claim the world No.1 position. Since 2004 only four players have managed to hold the honour – Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray. To add to the pressure, former player Marat Safin has backed his compatriot to achieve the milestone in the future. Safin will be the captain of the Russian team in the ATP Cup, which Medvedev is participating in.

“I believe he can be number one in the world.” Safin told Russian media earlier this week. “His all-around game… we just need to work on certain small things.”

Despite the backing, Medvedev is staying grounded about the prospect. Insisting that he isn’t ‘obsessed’ with the world No.1 ranking. At present, he is more than 4000 points adrift from Nadal in the ATP standings.

“I have been thinking about it (the No.1 spot) since I was six-years-old, but the thing is that I’m not obsessed with it,” said Medvedev. “For example, if I was 40 and during my career, I achieved a best ranking of number two in the world, It would not change my life completely.’
“Of course working hard and playing so many tournaments you want to achieve the best ranking possible.” He added.

With his eyes on the grand slams next year, 2020 also gives Medvedev the chance to make his Olympic debut. However, it isn’t as simple as that. Earlier this week the Russian sporting federation was banned from major sporting events by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) due to various violations. An investigation found that the Russian Anti-doping agency (RUSDA) deliberately tampered with athletes samples to hide positive tests.

The ITF notes that Russian tennis has never been linked to the controversy, however, players such as Medvedev will be under sanction. Unless the ban is overturned, they are only allowed to play at the event as neutral athletes.

“To be honest as a tennis player it is a little bit tough to talk about these things because I live in Monaco and we get tested in every country around the world. From 20 to 30 doping tests.” Medvedev states.
“I know what happened, but I don’t know how to react to it because I’m not in this (the Russian) federation.”

Asked if he will still play in the Olympics, which will be held in Tokyo, Medvedev cautiously replied ‘I think so.’ Although he is far from certain in doing so.

“Looking at this decision, it’s disappointing that me as a Russian player, who hasn’t nothing to do with this, will have to play without a flag. It is a little bit strange for me. I don’t know why this decision was made exactly so I don’t know if it was the right decision.” He concluded.

Medvedev ended 2019 with 59 wins on the ATP Tour. More than any other player this year.

Interview conducted by Alessandro Stella in Saudi Arabia

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