Raonic, Bouchard carry hopes of Great White North

Sun Jan 18, 2015 12:32am EST
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By Greg Stutchbury

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Eugenie Bouchard and Milos Raonic may represent the best hopes of Canada's first grand slam singles champion but their relative successes have had little impact upon each other, according to Raonic.

"What I do, what she does, I don't think it really affects the other person," Raonic, the men's eighth seed at the Australian Open, told reporters on Sunday. "I don't think it correlates to the other person.

"It's a good thing to have," he added in having Bouchard help him put the Great White North on the tennis map.

"But ... it's about going about and trying to achieve the things you want to achieve."

Raonic, who plays Ukrainian qualifier Illya Marchenko in the first round at Melbourne Park, and Bouchard had similarly breakout years in 2014.

The 24-year-old Raonic became the first Canadian man to make a grand slam semi-final at Wimbledon, while Bouchard went one better by making the women's final against Petra Kvitova.

He also finished the year inside the top-10 for the first time (8th), as did Bouchard (7th), and he made the quarter-finals or better at 14 tournaments.

Bouchard also made the semi-finals in Melbourne and Roland Garros and won her first WTA title as well as qualifying for the WTA Finals in Singapore.   Continued...

Eugenie Bouchard of Canada follows through on a return to Ana Ivanovic of Serbia during their WTA Finals singles tennis match at the Singapore Indoor Stadium October 22, 2014. REUTERS/Edgar Su