It’s quarterfinals day for the ladies of the 2014 French Open and Thursday’s live streaming ESPN schedule will be highlighted by a clash between Maria Sharapova and Eugenie Bouchard. Court Philippe Chatrier at Stade Roland Garros will be the site for this singles match, which gets underway around 9 a.m. EST (8 a.m. CST/7 a.m. MST/6 a.m. PST) on ESPN2 (national TV) and WatchESPN (online).
As reported by Andrew Brenner (RolandGarros.com) on June 4, the seventh-seeded Russian and the 18th seeded Canadian will get going following the conclusion of the doubles final between Anna-Lena Groenefeld/Jean-Julien Rojer vs. Julia Goerges/Nenad Zimonjic. To watch the action live simply tune to DirecTV channel 209 on your television sets, or click here to launch ESPN’s free live stream (En Español).
With the early second-round departure of defending champion, Serena Williams, the general consensus is that this is Sharapova’s tournament to lose. Looking for her second Roland Garros title and the fifth Grand Slam of her career, “Masha” is two wins away from her goal.
As an SI report illustrates, the 2012 French Open champ is coming off a gutsy performance, in which she had to rally from behind to eliminate Garbine Muguruza. After stunning Serena in the second round, the Spanish-Venezuelan was looking to add Sharapova to her list of big-name upsets at this year’s French Open.
However, the “Queen of Clay” had other ideas, as she came roaring back after losing the opener to ultimately win the match in three sets (1-6, 7-5, 6-1). The win gave Sharapova her 48th Roland Garros victory, and more importantly, a date with Canada’s rising tennis star.
Coming off the first WTA tournament win of her young career, Bouchard is not only making noise with her on-court play, but also with her honest approach on the microphone. She was recently asked about her relationship with her once childhood idol, and let’s just say the 20-year-old didn’t pull any punches when talking about Sharapova.
“We’re not friends, so there is that,” she said with a straight face during her post-match press conference. “Of course as a child I looked up to her and I remember watching her in the finals of Wimbledon and, you know, thought what she was doing was so cool and I wanted to do the same thing. We’re in the semis of a Grand Slam, so I’m going to respect her but not put her too high on a pedestal and really just battle.”
In the eyes of 2014 French Open oddsmakers, Maria Sharapova is a lofty betting favorite at -300, while Eugenie Bouchard’s chances of an upset are valued at +250. The OVER/UNDER is set at a combined total of 21 games, and alternate betting lines go as follows: Sharapova -4 [-118] vs. Bouchard +4 [+102].
Tennis fans around the world cannot afford to miss what is sure to be a heated battle between two of the world’s best. Not only is this for a spot in the 2014 French Open finals, but let’s face it, the fact that Bouchard isn’t particularly fond of Sharapova also makes this match that much more interesting.
Would it be possible that these ladies don’t care for one another because of Grigor Dimitrov? Several reports would certainly suggest there’s some truth to that. Watch Maria Sharapova battle Eugenie Bouchard in a match that seems to be more personal than just strictly business. Tune to ESPN2 (TV) or WatchESPN (online) at 9 a.m. EST Thursday morning to watch it all unfold live from Paris, France.