Eugenie Bouchard grabbed her first win on grass this year with a 7-6(5) 6-3 success over Alison Riske that will boast the Canadian’s confidence.
Having suffered 10 defeats from her past 11 matches, Bouchard was desperate to collect a long overdue triumph ahead of returning to Wimbledon.
Last season Bouchard was the undisputed golden girl on the WTA Tour, shining under the spotlight at Grand Slam events.
She stormed into the 2014 Wimbledon final before running of steam to put up a poor battle against Czech Republic’s Petra Kvitova.
But her disappointments of being thrashed at SW19 and slipping down to world #12 this term following a grim set of results are all behind her.
“I’ve had to learn to be patient and understand that there are going to be ups and downs in tennis, and keep working and believing in what I do, and know there’s light at the end of the tunnel.
“I’ve been doing, putting my head down and working and knowing it will turn around.”
She was a very subdued figure on a cold Centre Court with the fans never really warming to the youngster, and the ambience lacked any real excitement.
Riske, who overwhelmed France’s Alize Cornet on Sunday, took the opening two games and left Bouchard struggling with her footwork.
But the Canadian bounced back, not trying to pull off any great shots, to win the next four games.
American Riske levelled and it was a tightly fought contest that predictably went to a tie-break that Bouchard edged.
The second set followed the same pattern as the first with the crowd failing to be ignited by the contest.
But once Riske was broken in the sixth game Bouchard came to life and started to show her class on grass.
And serving for the match at 5-3 Bouchard thundered down two aces and on put away Riske’s return to register a win – her fourth against the American from their five encounters – that could prove to be a turning point.
Bouchard said, “It was a tough battle, but I just want to take it one match at a time. I want to just keep fighting no matter what.
“I felt good with my game today, and I’m happy with the way I fought, so I just want to keep going.”