Advertisement

Eugenie Bouchard under fire over 'spineless' act amid Maria Sharapova furore

The since-deleted tweet from the Canadian star has left the tennis world in a frenzy.

Eugenie Bouchard reignited her infamous rivalry with Maria Sharapova after posting an explosive tweet during the Madrid Open that has since been deleted. Pic: Instagram/Getty
Eugenie Bouchard reignited her infamous rivalry with Maria Sharapova after posting an explosive tweet during the Madrid Open that has since been deleted. Pic: Instagram/Getty

Canadian star Eugenie Bouchard has been labelled "spineless" by tennis fans after reigniting her infamous rivalry with Maria Sharapova by posting an explosive tweet at the Madrid Open, that has since been deleted. Bouchard kept her resurgent form going at the Madrid Open after beating Dayana Yastremska in the first round, before taking a shock swipe at her beaten opponent and Sharapova.

Bouchard won 75 per cent of her first serves and was successful on eight of 21 break point opportunities, prevailing 6-7 (6-8) 6-2 6-2 against Ukraine's Yastremska. After a torrid few years in which she has tumbled down the WTA rankings, it marks the Canadian's first main draw win at the Madrid Open since 2017, and her second at WTA 1000 level since February 2019.

'HEARTBREAKING': Andy Murray in shock drama at Madrid Open

FIERY: Kokkinakis in ugly post-match clash with opponent at Madrid Open

BIG UPDATE: Uncle Toni weighs in on Rafa Nadal injury dramas

The 29-year-old former World No.5, who beat Elizabeth Mandlik in qualifying on Tuesday to make the draw proper, is playing in her first main draw at a WTA 1000 event without the benefit of a wild card in more than four years. She will next face the 18th-seeded Martina Trevisan of Italy on Friday for a berth in the third round.

However, the former Wimbledon finalist caused a massive stir after her first round victory when she posted an explosive tweet that referenced doping scandals involving Yastremska, as well as five-time grand slam winner, Sharapova. “There’s something about playing dopers in Madrid,” Bouchard wrote on the post that accompanied a photo of her celebrating the win over Yastremska.

Bouchard quickly deleted the inflammatory post, but not before fans took screenshots of it and shared it across the tennis world. The Canadian's explosive post was a clear shot at Yastremska - who was cleared of doping after being handed a provisional suspension in 2021 - and Sharapova, who the Canadian beat at the Madrid Open in 2017.

Sharapova famously served a 15-month suspension after being found guilty of using the banned substance meldonium in 2016. Bouchard was one of the most vocal critics of the Russian at the time, brandishing her a "cheater" and suggesting the ban was not long enough.

Seen here, Maria Sharapova congratulates Eugenie Bouchard during their infamous Madrid Open tennis clash in 2017.
Maria Sharapova congratulates Eugenie Bouchard during their infamous Madrid Open tennis clash in 2017. Pic: Getty (Clive Rose via Getty Images)

“I don’t think that’s right. She’s a cheater,” Bouchard told media about Sharapova at the time. “I don’t think a cheater at any sport should be allowed to play that sport again.

"It’s so unfair to all the other players who do it the right way and are true. I think from the WTA it sends the wrong message to young kids: ‘Cheat and we’ll welcome you back with open arms.’ I don’t think that’s right, and definitely not someone I look up to anymore because it’s definitely ruined it for me a little bit.”

Yastremska, on the contrary, had her provisional suspension overturned after testing positive for anabolic steroid mesterolone in 2021. The International Tennis Federation (ITF) ultimately lifted the ban on the Ukrainian after ruling that she “bore no fault or negligence” for the failed test.

Eugenie Bouchard causes uproar with since-deleted tweet

The reality that Yastremska was cleared of doping left many tennis fans questioning why Bouchard would make such an inflammatory remark about her opponent after the win in Madrid. The fact the Canadian then deleted the tweet left many users on social media to slam her for being gutless and lacking class.

with agencies

Sign up to our newsletter and score the biggest sport stories of the week.