ISTANBUL – Canadian qualifier Eugenie Bouchard has reached the final of the Istanbul Tennis Championships.
Bouchard of Westart Mount beat Spain’s world number 99 Paula Badosa beat-3, 6-2 in the semifinals of the WTA Tour clay-court event on Saturday.
“I’m especially proud of how I managed myself every day because I had to play one match every day,” Bouchard said.
“Tomorrow is going to be my seventh day so I have to play an equal number of matches to reach the Slam final. It’s like playing a Grand Slam but more than half the time.
The 226-year-old Canadian, ranked 2272 in the world, saved seven break points against Badosa.
Bouchard, who has won two qualifying matches for the main draw, will play the winner of the other semifinal between Czech Republic’s No. 13 Tere Martinkova and Romania’s No. 6 Patricia Maria Tig.
This will be Bouchard’s first final since 2012. Her only tournament title of her career came in 2014 in Nuremberg, Germany.
After reaching the Wimbledon final in 2014, the ranking of former world number one Bouchard, ranked fifth in the world, has dropped in recent years.
Bouchard’s ranking is expected to rise to 1,163 if he loses the final. If he wins, he will crack the top 150.
Because of his rankings, Bouchard has no idea what’s next on his schedule. KOID-19 did not qualify for the US Open this year, preventing lower-level players from being shot in the main draw.
“I want to play as much as possible,” he said. “Anywhere I can go with my rankings or with the wild card where I’m going to play. The current issues with this kind of short schedule are a bit more last minute.”
This is Bouchard’s third run in at least the quarterfinals this year. He reached the quarter-finals of his first tournament from COVID-19 suspension last month after losing in three sets to World No. 18 Alice Merten in Prague.