July 11, 2024

Open Court

MORE TENNIS THAN YOU'LL EVER NEED

MELBOURNE, Australia – This is a pretty key Australian Open for Genie Bouchard.

With ranking points to defend both in the week leading up to the first Grand Slam of the season, and a third-round result here a year ago, the 23-year-old Canadian’s ranking is at stake.

After failing to defend a semifinal result in Sydney, last week, Bouchard is now outside the top 100. Ranked No. 112, 29 spots lower than she was to start the season.

Being outside the top 100 has significant consequences on many fronts – not the least of which are her confidence and her ability to gain entry into the biggest events.

The draw gods were fairly kind in Melbourne, as Bouchard will face a hard-hitting French player who has not competed since last September.

Océane Dodin, a 21-year-old six-footer whose game is basically all-or-nothing power, comes in without a lot of confidence or tennis.

Until Bouchard finally gets on court to start her Australian Open campaign, here are some shots from her warmup session at 10 a.m.

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