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Eugenie Bouchard excited for 'rowdy' fans at US Open

Eugenie Bouchard is sure to endear herself to New York's tennis faithful as she tries to win her first grand slam title across the next two weeks.

Eugenie Bouchard Eugenie Bouchard blows kisses to the crowd after her win Tuesday.
Credit: Getty Images

Over the years, some non-American tennis players have shown they can't handle the rowdy crowds at the U.S. Open.

South African Kevin Curren once famously said, "They should drop an A-bomb on the place."

But not Eugenie Bouchard.


The 20-year-old photogenic blonde from Montreal wants it to be louder and rowdier in Queens.

"I would allow fans to come in between every game and allow them to be louder and more into it," Bouchard said after dispatching Olga Govortsova, 6-2, 6-1, in the first round of the Open Tuesday. "I think it would be more fun for them."

With an attitude like that, Bouchard is sure to endear herself to New York's tennis faithful as she tries to win her first grand slam title across the next two weeks.

Bouchard, who has drawn comparisons to glamour girl and former U.S. Open champion Maria Sharapova, is already a fan favorite at other grand slams, even if her personal fan club known as "Genie's Army" — comprised mostly of young Australian men — didn't make its way to Queens.

But if Bouchard replicates what she's done at the other three majors this year, her star is sure to ascend.

"[The grand slams] are the best tournaments of the year, right?" Bouchard said. "They're so special. I love playing the grand slams and I want to hopefully raise my level in the big matches and the big stages and the U.S. Open is the biggest stage."

Bouchard is the only woman to reach the semifinals of all three majors the year. She reached the semifinals of the Australian and French Opens, and then advanced all the way to the Wimbledon final before she was smoked by Petra Kvitova, 6-3, 6-0.

If she reaches the Final Four in New York, she will become the only active woman to make all four major semifinals in one year.

That will be no easy task since she's in the same quarter as Kvitova, who rolled over Kristina Mladenovic, 6-1, 6-0 in her first-round match.

Bouchard owns five wins against Top 10 opponents this year, but entering the U.S. Open, the Canadian had won just one match in her last three events. Part of her troubles stemmed from knee and hamstring injuries, which hampered her ability to practice.

"I feel good on the court, just maybe not as much practice or matches have gone into it," she said. "It's that give and take you have to do with the body."
Can she make another run here?

"It's an awful lot to ask," 18-time grand slam winner Chrissie Evert said on ESPN.

"This is a big match for her. I'm very interested, because I've been a fan, to see how she's going to come out and play the U.S. Open."

Bouchard is also learning how to deal with stardom. She was the subject of a lengthy New York Times magazine cover story this past weekend, which she said is a "good thing."

"The fact that see has so much attention on her, I think that's been the problem," Patrick McEnroe said on ESPN. "I think in some ways she's still adjusting to that."

Still, he added: "I think Bouchard will be just fine. She's a competitor. She loves to get out there on the big stage. If she can get through a couple of matches ... look out for her because she's a big-match player, a big-tournament player."

And apparently she's not afraid of it getting too rowdy, either.

Follow Adam Zagoria on Twitter @AdamZagoria for coverage throughout the U.S. Open.

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