• The Australian Open Daily Deuce: day one
• The Australian Open Daily Deuce: day two
• The Australian Open Daily Deuce: day three
• The Australian Open Daily Deuce: day four
• The Australian Open Daily Deuce: day five
• The Australian Open Daily Deuce: day six
Here’s what took our fancy on day seven:
When Eugenie met Maria
Eugenie Bouchard and Maria Sharapova, who will play off in a ratings bonanza quarter-final, go way back.
All the way to Florida, 2002, in fact, when eight-year-old autograph hunter Bouchard approached Sharapova, then a 15-year-old in her first professional tournament.
Bouchard, a prolific tweeter, posted this pic of their encounter, plus a series of more recent shots of the pair, who are Nike ‘teammates’. For those of us with fluoro fatigue, we particularly like the one of the pair in their ‘Wimby whites’.
— Eugenie Bouchard (@geniebouchard) March 8, 2013
— Eugenie Bouchard (@geniebouchard) May 21, 2013
But that does not make them ‘mates’. As Bouchard was at pains to point out before they clashed in the semi-finals of last year’s French Open: “We’re not friends.” Someone suggested on Twitter that this picture from a function during the WTA finals in October last year might better sum up their more recent vibe.
For the record, Sharapova won the French Open semi in three sets, 4-6 7-5 6-2, and has a 3-0 overall record against her former fan.
Jokerman riffs out
Novak Djokovic has flown under the radar all week, although it is not as though he has been hiding his light under a bushel.
As well as blitzing his way through the first week, he took time out to lead the centre court crowd in a rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’ for his mother on Saturday night and to rock out with a holographic Keith Urban at the ANZ Jam Slam.
From little things …
He is no Li Na, but China’s Zhang Ze (pictured below) made a little bit of history of his own on Sunday.
Almost a year since Li Na’s singles triumph, Zhang struck a (very modest) blow for China’s male population, becoming the first man from the country to win a Grand Slam match.
Mind you, he needed the help of Taiwanese mixed doubles parter Chang Kai-chen to achieve that modest feat.