Eugenie Bouchard Snaps Losing Streak, Then Eliminated In Rome

One step forward and another step back for Eugenie Bouchard.  Canada’s darling of tennis finally broke her losing streak at the Italian Open earlier this week, but was eliminated from the tournament one match later by Carla Suarez Navarro.

Genie became one of the most popular tennis players in the world last season and served as an ambassador in the sport for Canada alongside her male co-star Milos Raonic.  Both players made breakthroughs for Canada last season, winning tournaments on their respective tours, qualifying for semifinal rounds in major events – Genie reached the finals at Wimbledon – and watching their names skyrocket up the WTA and ATP rankings.

While Raonic has maintained his gameplay and continues to thrive on the ATP Tour this season, the opposite is true for Genie.  Prior to the Italian Open, she last won a game at the BNP Paribas Open in March before going on a six match losing streak that included a losing sweep at the Fed Cup with Team Canada.

Earlier this week, Genie arrived in Rome for an important tournament ahead of the French Open, the second Grand Slam scheduled to begin on May 24th.  Genie reached the semifinals of the tournament last season, and is betting on a return to form in time for her return to Roland Garros this month.

Genie began the Italian Open in the second round, and was drawn to play Zarina Diyas of Kazakhstan after the 21 year old defeated Tsvetana Pironkova in the first round.  While it wasn’t a landslide victory, Genie delivered on early bets by defeating Diyas in straight sets, snapping her losing streak and advancing into the third round.

However, the recovery ended there as she faced off with Navarro.  After winning the first set in extra games, she failed to capitalize on her serves in the second and third sets.  Navarro broke three times to take back control, and after pushing the final set into extra games, converted on the match winning point.

Having been eliminated in Rome, only one tournament remains on the WTA Tour before Genie is scheduled to play at Roland Garros.  She has yet to formally enter into either tournament scheduled for next week, but more time to play is the best way to practice for the Grand Slam in 10 days.

Genie may have lost some of her magic in the first half of the season, but the French Open is the end of that half.  The next phase of the season begins with the road to Wimbledon, where Genie competed in the finals last season.

Can she find that tennis star inside again?