Top 2014: Tennis stars steal spotlight
This month Olympic.ca will be revisiting the top Canadian sports moments of 2014.
Canadian tennis has made major breakthroughs in 2014, most notably establishing household names and raised expectations for the next generation.
Arguably not since Bobby Powell reached Wimbledon semifinals in 1908, could Canada claim a world-class men’s singles superstar. That changed this year with the rise of Milos Raonic, building on his progress of previous years to match Powell’s achievement at Wimbledon, reaching the ATP World Tour Finals, and overcoming the great Roger Federer in Paris – the 23-year old Canadian’s first victory over a world top three player.
The lawns of Wimbledon provided more greatness for Tennis Canada in 2014, when Eugenie Bouchard did one better than Powell and Raonic and vaulted herself to the final in the ladies draw. Bouchard reached three grand slam semifinals in 2014, won her first tournament as a pro, made the WTA Finals, and was named the tour’s most improved player on her second season in the mix. The 20-year old once jumped to No. 5 in the world, a Canadian record.
We’re not done with Wimbledon yet. While Raonic and Bouchard were climbing up the singles charts, the emergence of 24-year old Vasek Pospisil as a top doubles player further served Canadian tennis. Pospisil, with American partner Jack Sock, won the Wimbledon men’s doubles title. In singles, Pospisil was one half of a historic all-Canadian ATP final in Washington, D.C. that saw Raonic take the title.
Thanks to the incredible work of all top Tennis Canada players, in 2015, Canadian men’s and women’s teams will take part in the elite eight of Davis Cup and Fed Cup respectively, trying to make Canada the world’s top tennis nation.
Oh, and Olympic champion Daniel Nestor is still one of the best doubles tennis players in the world. He is 42.
Decent year, eh?