Canadian Eugenie Bouchard falls to Patricia Maria Tig at Istanbul Open final


Eugenie Bouchard, of Canada (Kevin Hagen/AP)

Canadian tennis pro Eugenie Bouchard lost a back-and-forth match to Romania’s Patricia Maria Tig in the final of the Istanbul Open on Sunday.

Bouchard, 26, was making her first appearance in a WTA final since 2016, after making a run through the tournament that included a three-set upset over top-seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova. In the final, she lost 6-2, 1-6, 6-7 (7-4 on tiebreak).

The Montreal native, who worked through a fifth match in five days, survived six championship point tries for Tig to send the match to a tiebreak.

Bouchard honed in on stamina training during quarantine — then put it to use this week.

“I decided to really focus on my fitness, because I think that’s so important now in the game,” she recently said in an interview. “It’s something I’ve started doing a lot in the past year — I have days where I just work physically with a great trainer, so it’s been one of my goals. And this week shows me that it’s been worth it, and gives me the trust that I’ve done the right thing.”

Bouchard said her long drought of reaching a WTA final was not on her mind, noting, “I don’t want to compare it to other weeks where I’ve had great results. I’m specifically proud of how I handled myself every day, because I’ve had to play a match every day — it’s kind of like playing the same amount of matches to get to the final of a Grand Slam, except in half the time.”

Bouchard was seeking her first WTA title since 2014. She entered the Istanbul Open ranked No. 272 in the world for women’s singles.

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