Seven Top 10 seeds were in action on Wednesday at the Rogers Cup in Montreal, but only six moved into the second round as Slovak Kristina Kucova recorded the biggest upset of the day, knocking out No. 8-seeded Carla Suarez Navarro 3-6, 6-4, 6-4.
But the upset that mattered most to the homecountry Canadian fans was Eugenie Bouchard recording her second big win in as many days, rolling over No. 11 seed Dominika Cibulkova 6-2, 6-0.
“It feels special playing in Montreal,” said Bouchard, who will next face Kucova. “I don’t get to do it often, so it just makes me extra motivated…I felt very solid and very focused; it’s important for me to keep my focus and keep my energy up.”
Cibulkova had protective taping on her lower left calf that was surgically repaired in 2015. Bouchard in her first round beat Lucie Safarova.
Also on the upset tip was Russian Darya Kasatkina, who dismissed No. 13 Samantha Stosur 7-6(1), 6-3.
Top 10 winners on the day were No. 2 Angie Kerber working past Mirjana Lucic-Baroni 6-3, 4-6, 6-3; No. 4 Aggie Radwanska beating Monica Niculescu 6-1, 7-5; No. 6 Venus Williams powering past Barbora Strycova 6-3, 6-0; No. 7 Roberta Vinci coming from a set down to beat fellow Italian Camila Giorgi 2-6, 6-3, 6-4; No. 9 Svetlana Kuznetsova beating Russian compatriot Alla Kudryavtseva 7-5, 6-0; and No. 10 Madison Keys topping fellow American Madison Brengle 6-4, 6-3.
Kerber, who played the final night match, withdrew from Bastad last week citing an elbow injury, and has been further treating the injury this week.
The elder Williams sister Venus continued her torrid play, coming off a narrow loss in the Stanford final.
“It was definitely more straightforward I think than all of our other matches,” Williams said of handling Strycova, but was cryptic regarding some serving problems. “I had issues. I don’t like to really get into, you know, what’s going down. But I had some issues. I definitely do like to serve a lot bigger. I hope to be better for the next match.”
Williams will next meet Keys in an all-American battle.
“I think a big thing is knowing when to be aggressive and when to back off,” Keys said of facing Venus. “She’s obviously going to hit a lot of winners and a lot of good shots. I think kind of taking my chances when I have them, but not being over-eager about it is going to be a huge factor.”
Other seeded winners on the day were No. 12 Petra Kvitova easing past Andrea Petkovic 6-2, 6-4; No. 14 Karolina Pliskova receiving a walkover from Sara Errani; the streaking No. 15 Johanna Konta topping Vania King 7-5, 6-1; No. 16 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova defeating Christina McHale 6-2, 7-5; and No. 17 Elina Svitolina edging Canadian Francoise Abanda 7-6(2), 7-6(3).
Thursday’s matches to look for are (6) Venus Williams vs. (10) Madison Keys, former Slam winners (9) Svetlana Kuznetsova vs. (12) Petra Kvitova, and Genie Bouchard continuing her campaign against qualifier Kristina Kucova.
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