Petra Kvitova (CZE) will play Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) in the 2014 Wimbledon women's singles final
For one of the players it is a first Grand Slam final; for the other a second appearance in the denouement at a major three years after winning her first and only Grand Slam title to date. The Wimbledon women’s singles final proves to be a fascinating affair.
At the heart of the action will be 20-year-old Canadian star Eugenie Bouchard, who is contesting her first major final in just her sixth Grand Slam appearance after defeating No. 3 seed Simona Halep 76(5) 62 in the semifinals on Thursday.
It was just two years ago that Bouchard lifted the girls’ singles trophy aloft at the All England Lawn Tennis Club and now she stands on the verge of being crowned the youngest Grand Slam champion since Maria Sharapova at the 2006 US Open.
And the confidence that the young Canadian takes from her grass court junior victory is still with her.
“I think that helps,” said Bouchard. “Not only at this tournament, but I think that's helped me in many tournaments after winning the juniors. It definitely gave me confidence in playing in the professionals. Winning the juniors was a big point in my career.
“I feel extra special here, a little bit like I'm at home. It's always enjoyable coming to Wimbledon.”
Doubtless the visit will feel extra special if Bouchard manages to win her first major crown on the turf of Centre Court, but before that dream can become a reality she has to get past a player who has done it all before.
Petra Kvitova is hoping to pick up her second Grand Slam crown at the same venue where she won her first in 2011.
The 24-year-old Czech, who has helped her country to win two Fed Cup titles since winning her first major, defeated her compatriot and friend, Lucie Safarova, 76(6) 61 in a close battle on Thursday.
The big-hitting Czech will be hoping to use the experience of winning the Wimbledon title three years ago to her advantage when she takes on Bouchard in Saturday’s final.
Reflecting on her triumph in 2011, Kvitova said: "I learned a lot, definitely. I mean, it was everywhere. It was big surprise for me. I didn't know before how it feels. I'm used to [it] now and I know how to handle it. I hope this experience can help me."
The match-up is also a preview of the 2015 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas first round clash between Canada and Czech Republic.
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