Bouchard on twirlgate + her no WTA friends policy

Wilson Blade 9

Eugenie BouchardSeventh seed Eugenie Bouchard battled into the fourth round of the Australian Open after fighting a break down three times in the first set, including one in the opening game, and eventually winning eight straight games to eliminate Caroline Garcia 7-5 6-0.

Her post-match press conference was again largely about the twirl question she had received from the on-court commentator after her second-round victory. There has been so much talk about that incident, largely referred to as sexist, disrespectful and insulting, that it has even become known as twirlgate. However, Bouchard is not that harsh on the commentator.

Personally I’m not offended. No, I think it was an in-the-moment thing and it was funny. But, yeah, I mean, it’s just funny how it’s taken a life of its own. I’m just going to try to focus on my tennis.

I like this cartoon because it perfectly illustrates my initial reaction. I actually first thought that the commentator expected the overly popular twerk! That would’ve been a disaster!

Bouchard twirlgate

However, the topic that always intrigues me is the question of friendship among WTA players. Here’s what Bouchard said about it in her today’s interview:

I see them as competition. You know, I don’t want to become really good friends with any of the girls or tour. I’m definitely friendly with most of them, and that’s fine, but I kind of come here, do my job, and leave. I think that’s the best way for me to stay focused and not really have distractions.

So here’s another vote against the WTA friendships. Maybe I should run a poll on this topic to see how many of you believe in it!

Bouchard’s fourth-round opponent at the Australian Open will be Irina-Camelia Begu, who had taken out ninth seed Angelique Kerber in the first round and has reached the second week of a Grand Slam for the first time with a 6-4 6-4 win over Carina Witthoeft. (photo: Ralf Reinecke)


  1. Emman Damian, she said that she’s friendly with everyone, she’s simply not going deep into friendships. You think she’s emulating Sharapova in this respect? I don’t know. I’ve heard it many times that there’s not friendship on the WTA tour and I can understand that.

  2. Simona Halep was quoted in a New York times article as saying that Bouchard does not talk to any of the other women on the tour. Same for Sharapova. It seems that not only does she have no friends on the tour she (Maria) has no friends outside. I know Chelsea handler was in her box for one slam but is long gone. I guess Genie will always have her twin.

  3. Sabey, it definitely seems so about Maria. Good that you mentioned Chelsea – I found their friendship quite weird, though. You? But way before Chelsea there was this girl Camilla Belle, she was hanging out with Maria all the time (much more than Chelsea) and then all of a sudden they parted ways. Here are some links from 2007 and 2008 showing Maria and Camilla:

  4. I don’t believe she doesn’t want friends on tour. During WTA finals, you can see that she really bonded with the other Top 8 players. Basically, she wants to be like Maria Sharapova, her idol. I like her goals. She really want to be on top of the rankings. She has a potential, she just needs to strengthen them.

  5. I think so. MaSha has a big influence on Genie. Well, I understand that. It’s a big difference between WTA and ATP. In WTA, girls are not that friendly with each other. In contrast, in ATP, we see more solidarity between players.

  6. Eugenie Bouchard is just an insipid marketing product… Like Maria. No surprise they have no friend. I have respect for their tennis and their competitiveness spirit, but beyond that, they are the dullest and least interesting people on tour.

  7. But if it means that she’ll get better results, then we have to respect her decision. For me she is like a mini Maria or “Maria Sharapova in-training.” Genie has the talent and she has the overall package. I know she’ll go far in women’s tennis.

  8. Emman Damian, “Maria Sharapova in-training” haha. Bouchard will never get rid of that Sharapova label, that’s a fact. Well, if she manages to copy Maria’s on-court results, she sure won’t care!

    Gregoire, I can imagine that Maria is too focused on her projects and not a fun-loving individual, but I also have tremendous respect for her determination and the fact that she has set her career goals and is not letting anyone distract her or stay in her way.

  9. She will not care if she doesn’t have true friends. She is really hungry for the on court success. Maria was a hig inspiration for her and her goal is to be like her: a successful multiple grand slam winner on court and an entrepreneur-model off court. Can’t ask for more!


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