Re: Elina Svitolina Cheering Thread!
Despite a lengthy rain delay the juniors were able to get on court to play singles semifinal matches on Friday to set up the upcoming finals.
Third-seeded Elina Svitolina of Ukraine will take on fifth-seeded Eugenie Bouchard of Canada in the girls’ final on Saturday. Svitolina took down 14th-seeded Francoise Abanda of Canada 64 36 62 in one semifinal. Bouchard sent 11th-seeded Anett Kontaveit of Estonia packing 76(3) 64.
All the competitors today had to hang out and keep themselves entertained for a number of hours before the rain stopped.
“It was difficult because I was waiting for my match because of the rain,” Svitolina said. “And they changed my match because we were supposed to play the second match. And it was difficult to go into the match for a few games.”
The 17-year-old Svitolina is playing in her first Grand Slam junior tournament since 2010. Back in that year she won the Roland Garros girls’ trophy. “I’m so happy that I passed the semifinals and it’s a great feeling that I will play again in a junior Grand Slam final,” Svitolina said after the match. “I was feeling good with the way I was playing.”
Svitolina was the player who took the chances in the match. She made 28 unforced errors to 19 for Abanda. However, taking the risks allowed her 35 winners to only 22 for Abanda.
The Ukrainian was looking forward to facing Bouchard in the final. “I think it will be a good match and I will try to show my game,” Svitolina said. “I will try to play good. Two years ago I played here and lost first round which was not so good. And now I like to play here. I like to play everywhere -- I like to play on clay and hard and grass. I cannot say where I prefer to play.”
Svitolina, the 2010 Roland Garros girls champion, prevented an all-Canadian final when she came from behind to beat 15-year-old Francoise Abanda 6-4, 3-6, 6-2 in the semifinals. Trailing 2-0 in the final set, the third-seeded Svitolina, who turns 18 in September, drew on her experience to win the final six games of the match.
"I started not so good, did a lot of mistakes, and she started good and was focused," Svitolina said of the early stages of the third set. "I lost my serve and knew I needed to be more focused or she would win. My head was somewhere out of the court, but then ball by ball and step by step I went, and I was playing well and feeling good."
Svitolina said she thought Abanda might have let a correction call on a serve bother her at a key stage in the third set.
"When it was 3-2 for me, the referee made a mistake and we had to replay her serve. At 15-30, on her first serve the linesman called out, but it was good. I didn't play, because of the call and we replay the point and I win an important point."
Asked if her experience may have been a factor in shifting the momentum, Svitolina said she thought it was, but had nothing but praise for the young Canadian.
"She's young, but she's a great player," said Svitolina, who played Fed Cup for Ukraine against the US back in April. "I think she has a great future."
Svitolina is happy to be back in a final and despite her success on clay, she is comfortable on grass.
"I like to play on grass and I got used to it this week," said Svitolina. "It was great to play here and I hope to play good tomorrow."
Svitolina has the experience, but she won in her first junior slam final at Roland Garros, so she knows it doesn't guarantee her a victory.