USTA Criticizes Bouchard For Focusing On Lawsuit Instead Of Her Play
Days before the start of the U.S. Open, the USTA criticized player Eugenie Bouchard for focusing on her lawsuit against the group and not on “playing to her best ability,” describing it as “unfortunate.” The USTA statement on Bouchard came after her lawyer called out the owner of the Open for using hardball tactics in the litigation during an interview with THE DAILY that he initiated. The lawyer, Benedict Morelli, said settlement talks had essentially collapsed. Bouchard suffered a concussion during last year’s Open after falling in an allegedly poorly lit and unattended area of the player locker room. She withdrew from the tournament and subsequent ones. She is entered in next week’s event.
“The USTA does not comment on the substance of ongoing litigation,” the tennis group’s statement said. “However, it is truly unfortunate that a year after her accident, Genie’s focus is on matters other than playing to her best ability." It added the USTA has "remained ready, willing and able to bring the litigation to a conclusion as expeditiously as is possible." In a separate line of the statement, the USTA said, “The litigation will have no impact on how Genie is treated at the US Open in any manner.” Bouchard will sit for her deposition after her season ends in October.
Two weeks ago, the USTA’s lawyers subpoenaed the car service driver who drove Bouchard back to her hotel the night of her accident and were on the verge of doing the same to Bouchard’s mother until Morelli said he emphasized she would be deposed voluntarily. Morelli said he has a list now of the attendants that were on duty the day Bouchard fell, and they include part time employees of the USTA, as well as WTA personnel. Asked if the WTA is now part of the issue, Morelli said he would not know until after he completed his deposition of the attendants. The WTA could not immediately be reached for comment. A trial would occur most likely some time in ‘17.