Eugenie Bouchard gives the thumb's up to whoever's on the other side of her court

Raonic, Bouchard advance at French Open

Canadians Raonic and Bouchard advance to quarter-finals at French Open

By The Canadian Press

PARIS – Milos Raonic and Eugenie Bouchard made history for Canada on Sunday as both powered into the quarter-finals of the French Open.

Eighth-seeded Raonic, from Thornhill, Ont., dispatched Spain’s Marcel Granollers 6-3, 6-3, 6-3, while Bouchard cruised past Germany’s Angelique Kerber 6-1, 6-2.

“I’m not surprised to make by first Grand Slam quarter-final but I would not have thought I would have done it first here on clay,” said Raonic. “I’ve always felt I could play well on clay.

“The key is not making much of a change in my game just for the clay. I’ve been trying to keep what I’ve been doing on the hardcourts.

Raonic will be the first Canadian man to play a Grand Slam quarter-final since Mike Belkin at the 1968 Australia Championships, which was renamed the Australian Open the following year. He is also the fourth Canadian man in history to reach the last eight at a major: Robert Powell (1908, 1910 and 1912 Wimbledon), William Johnston (1922-23 US Championships) and Belkin.

Bouchard is the first Canadian woman to make the quarter-finals in Paris since Helen Kelesi did it in 1989.

Raonic fired only six aces but went up an early break in each of the three sets in a contest which lasted less than two hours.

“It’s been working out well for me,” said Raonic. “If I can put this level of tennis together I believe that I have it in myself (to win a Grand Slam title).”

Raonic will face Serbian second seed Novak Djokovic, a winner over France’s Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-1, 6-4, 6-1. Djokovic beat Raonic in a Rome semifinal last month.

“I’m happy about this win, there are a lot of good things that can come from it,” said Raonic. “I’m happy with my level and it’s showing in my results. It’s also due to all the work I’ve been putting in.”

Earlier, Bouchard needed just 52 minutes to defeat Kerber. She’ll face Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro in the quarter-finals of the women’s tournament.

“I’m confident and I really believe in my skills. I believe I can play with the best girls out there,” said Bouchard. “She’s top 10, so I respect her. She can play some really good tennis. I was really mentally prepared for anything, for a battle.

“That mindset kind of helped me, it made me realize whatever happens I can deal with it on the court. I was really going for my shots. That was my intention and it worked.”

Bouchard stormed to her victory with 30 winners and 11 unforced errors. She broke Kerber on four of seven occasions as she took revenge for a US Open second-round loss to the German last year.

Bouchard never wavered as she dominated Kerber to win her ninth straight match, the longest win streak of her career. She snapped up the opening set in 22 minutes and was equally lethal in the second as Kerber failed on the only break point she had during the match.

“I just felt good out there, I executed my game plan really well, so I’m happy with that,” said Bouchard. “There are always things to improve, and I’m just going to focus on that tomorrow and try to do even better my next match.”

Victory lifted her career record against top 10 opponents to 5-10. Her victims this season included No. 10 Sara Errani at Indian Wells in March and No. 8 Jelena Jankovic last April in Charleston.

Bouchard has a 13-4 record at Grand Slams and is 29-11 on the season.

Just Posted

VicPD seeks person of interest after short-term rental ransacked

Combined losses for damage and theft are over $5,000

Whitecaps favourite switches to the Island

Marcel de Jong worked to end Whitecaps contract, joining Pacific FC on the ground floor

RCMP ask for public’s help to determine cause of weekend fire

RCMP are investigating the cause of the South Island Concrete fire

UVic’s cutting-edge centre leading the way in drones and AI

Centre For Aerospace Research works with partners including Department of National Defence

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

VIDEO: 8 things you need to know about the 2019 B.C. budget

Surplus of $247 million with spending on children, affordability and infrastructure

Greater Victoria Wanted List for the week of Feb. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

‘Bullet missed me by an inch’: Man recounts friend’s killing at Kamloops hotel

Penticton man witnessed Summerland resident Rex Gill’s murder in Kamloops

B.C. BUDGET: Income assistance raise still leaves many below poverty line

$50 per month increase included in funding for poverty and homelessness reduction

B.C. BUDGET: Indigenous communities promised billions from gambling

Extended family caregiver pay up 75 per cent to keep kids with relatives

B.C. BUDGET: New benefit increases family tax credits up to 96 per cent

BC Child Opportunity Benefit part of province’s efforts to reduce child poverty

B.C. BUDGET: Carbon tax boosts low-income credits, electric vehicle subsidies

Homeowners can get up to $14,000 for heating, insulation upgrades

B.C. man survives heart attack thanks to Facebook

A Princeton man suffered a heart attack while at an isolated property with no cell service

B.C. man sues Maxime Bernier’s People’s Party over trademark

Satinder Dhillon filed application for trademark same day Maxime Bernier announced the new party

Most Read