Emma Raducanu recalls her on-court experience at Wimbledon
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Emma Raducanu gained a mass following with her run to the fourth round at Wimbledon last month and Greg Rusedski believes questions on her ability to deal with the “stress and strain” of her performance has been laid to rest recently, but he insists the hard work is far from over. The Canadian-born tennis star has long been tipped for a bright future in tennis having impressed coaches in the juniors.
It was in Nottingham back in June where the teenager made her WTA main draw debut, losing to compatriot Harriet Dart in the opening round.
But it was her performance the week after in Glasgow, beating four-time Grand Slam winner Timea Babos, which ultimately earned a wildcard entry for the main draw at Wimbledon.
After that, Raducanu took her opportunity with both hands with impressive wins in the opening few rounds.
Upset after upset followed as the 18-year-old advanced to the second week of Wimbledon, becoming the youngest British female since 1959 to do so.
JUST IN: Raducanu learns US Open qualifying draw in bids for Grand Slam spot
Her run ended in heartbreaking circumstances as she retired with breathing difficulties and dizzines against Ajla Tomljanovic.
But Raducanu has seemingly taken the positives from her run at Wimbledon into the hard court season, reaching her first WTA Challenger final at the weekend and has now climbed into the world’ top 150.
Up next is for Raducanu to try and navigate three rounds of qualifying for the US Open and she’s already won her first match, beating Bibane Schoofs 6-1, 6-2.
Raducanu’s run at Wimbledon has suddenly thrust certain expectations on her shoulders, as every sportsperson who enjoys succcess early in their career contends with.
How she deals with that pressure and performs over the next year though will determine whether Raducanu can fulfil her potential, according to Rusedski, who will be on commentary duty with Amazon Prime throughout this year’s US Open.
“She really came to the forefront of the British public when she got to the fourth round of Wimbledon,” he told Express Sport.
“There were question marks about her dealing with the stress and strain of being in the fourth round and I think that argument has been put to bed.
“The nice thing is she’s gone to the lesser events and started to perform so it’s having that breakthrough moment, but what are you going to do afterwards because that’s the hardest part.
“All of a sudden the expectation is, ‘you should be winning everything. You have a great run at Wimbledon and these are lesser events’.
“That’s not the reality of tennis because when you have a big run, all the girls say, ‘I want to beat you even more now. I want to show everyone you’re not that good’.
“That’s the hard part, coming into Wimbledon next year and being consistent over this little while.
“It’s great to see her in the final of a 125 WTA and she needs to play in those events which are lesser and then start winning those and gradually build up to the main tour.
“It’s not all about Wimbledon, it’s not all about grass court seasons, it’s about whether she can do the other 11 months of the year and that defines whether you become a great champion and hit the expectations in your game.”
The US Open is available to watch on Prime Video from Monday 30th August
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