That was pretty much the extent of Eugenie Bouchard's on-court "coaching" experience after she won her second set against Simona Halep today in Indian Wells. Of all the embarrassing (and I know, I'm being redundant here) on-court coaching moments I've heard, this may have been the worst. I don't like on-court coaching, as readers of this blog know, but if a player is going to use it, she needs to get some strategy or some correction out of it. Maybe a bit of encouragement, too, but only as an extra. Bouchard got "This gal's a good player."
Halep, who--after taking the first set easily (6-2)--wasn't such a good player for some time. Bouchard won the second set 6-1 and didn't have much trouble doing it. Halep had her usual service problems, and even went down 3-4 in the third set. We've now come to expect her to turn things around at the last moment--and while I don't think that's a very wise way to play professional tennis--so far, it kind of works for her. She broke Bouchard back and it was once again all about Simona; she won the third set 6-4. Confidence goes a long way. Now, if she can just do something about that serve.
And speaking of players who like to get it done the hard way, Petra Kvitova went three sets yesterday to beat Svetlana Kuznetsova. She won the final set 6-0, and during the first and third sets, she looked like "real Petra."
Poor Lauren Davis, after having such a good run, she had to give Casey Dellacqua a walkover; Davis is the victim of food poisoning.
The defending champion, Maria Sharapova, was upset yesterday by qualifier Camila Giorgi. Fans sometimes talk about Giorgi's "Fighting Italian" similarities to Sara Errani, but to me, she's always most resembled Flavia Pennetta (but without the wonderful sneer). She fights and fights and fights, and when she gets a bit of a breather, she double-faults. She and Sharapova both struggled a lot during yesterday's match, and some of it was really unattractive to watch. But the Fighting Italian came through, 6-3, 4-6, 7-5. (Right after this occurred, the ATP defending champion, Rafael Nadal, was also upset, by Alex Dolgopolov, who is kind of the Kvitova of the men's tour, but with a lower ranking).
Giorgi's next opponent? Pennetta! Interesting. Pennetta, by the way, knocked out Sam Stosur.
Jelena Jankovic took care of Caroline Wozniacki easily in straight sets, and Aleks Wozniak beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Sloane Stephens defeated Ana Ivanovic, Dominika Cibulkova defeated Ekaterina Makarova, Alysa Kleybanova brought Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor's run to an end, and top seed Li Na quietly advanced over Karolina Pliskova (who went into a service slump and hit only two aces).