Four Canadians close in on spots in main draw at Wimbledon


Canada's Eugenie Bouchard plays a shot against Jennifer Brady in Birmingham, England, Monday June 18, 2018. (Mike Egerton/PA via AP)

Four Canadians are one win away from reaching the main draw at Wimbledon.

Eugenie Bouchard of Westmount, Que., and Bianca Andreescu of Mississauga, Ont., both won second-round women’s qualifying matches on Wednesday to advance to the final round of qualifying on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Brayden Schnur of Pickering, Ont., and Peter Polansky of Thornhill, Ont., are in the final round of men’s qualifying on Thursday.

On Wednesday, Bouchard beat Karolina Muchova of the Czech Republic 6-2, 2-6, 6-3, while Andreescu knocked off Yingying Duan of China 6-4, 6-3.

Bouchard, the Wimbledon runner-up in 2014, was forced to enter qualifying after seeing her world ranking tumble to No. 191. The 24-year-old will face No. 97 Mariana Duque-Marino of Colombia in the final round of qualifying.

Bouchard faced criticism on social media for giving short, terse responses in a post-match interview after her first-round qualifying win, but she was a bit more talkative following Wednesday’s triumph.

"I didn’t feel I was playing all that well," she told the Wimbledon website. "I’m just happy I was able to keep myself collected in the third and find a way."

When asked what it would mean to qualify for Wimbledon, Bouchard said, "I’d just be proud of myself for going through the matches. I have a match (Thursday) and that’s all I’m worried about right now."

The 18-year-old Andreescu, ranked 184th, takes on No. 128 Antonia Lottner of Germany on Thursday.

The 22-year-old Schnur, ranked 235th, meets No. 200 Christian Harrison of the U.S., while the 30-year-old Polansky, at No. 110, faces No. 147 Jason Kubler of Australia.

The four Canadians will be trying to join three Canadian men in the main draw. Two were seeded when the seedings came out on Wednesday — No. 13 Milos Raonic of Thornhill and No. 28 Denis Shapovalov of Richmond Hill, Ont. The Grand Slams are given leeway to stray from the rankings, explaining why Raonic has a better seed than Shapovalov despite being behind him in the world rankings.

The other Canadian in the main draw is Vasek Pospisil of Vancouver.

In women’s doubles, Gabriela Dabrowski of Ottawa and Yifan Xu of China are the sixth seeds.

Bouchard and American partner Caroline Dolehide lost their first-round women’s doubles qualifying match on Wednesday, falling 7-5, 6-2 against Bibiane Schoofs of the Netherlands and Ysaline Bonaventure of Belgium.

Play in the main draw begins on Monday.

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