Bouchard falls at U.S. Open but legal battle continues

Wed Aug 31, 2016 1:21am EDT
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By Steve Keating

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Eugenie Bouchard slumped to a first-round defeat at the U.S. Open on Tuesday but the Canadian might yet leave Flushing Meadows a big winner with her lawsuit against the grand slam and United States Tennis Association still to hit the courts.

Last year Bouchard exited the tournament under equally unhappy circumstances when she slipped on a wet locker room floor after a mixed doubles match, sustaining a concussion that forced her to withdraw from her fourth-round singles contest.

The 22-year-old Canadian, once ranked fifth in the world, has since filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Open and the USTA.

According to a report in the New York Times, Bouchard's lawyer, Benedict Morelli, has indicated he is seeking "millions and millions" in damages. The winner of the U.S. Open this year will take home $3.5 million.

Bouchard, however, says she is completely focused on what is happening on the tennis court and has left legal matters to her lawyers.

"I am 100 percent focused on tennis and I have lawyers who are working on the case and I don't think about it often at all, maybe once a month when they call me," Bouchard told reporters after her loss.

"I'm disappointed with what I think happened so I have to fight for what I think is right."

This year, Bouchard had no one to blame but herself for her first-round stumble as she was tripped up 6-3 3-6 6-2 by 20-year-old Czech Katerina Siniakova, who registered a first ever win at the U.S. Open.   Continued...

Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) returns a shot against Barbora Strycova (CZE) on day four during the Western and Southern tennis tournament at Linder Family Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports