Emma Raducanu eases into US Open quarter-finals
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The British teen sensation has been in scintillating form this year, and will face 11th seed Belinda Bencic in the quarter-finals at 5pm UK time. Bencic won the Olympic title last month, but 18-year-old Raducanu says she feels “very confident” ahead of the biggest match of her career to date. She announced herself on the world stage with a run to the last-16 at Wimbledon earlier this summer, but has stunned even herself with her Flushing Meadows heroics.
She is yet to drop a set in the tournament, and has lost just 15 games, the lowest total by any player since Serena Williams in 2013.
She entered the tournament as a qualifier and has already dispatched three top 50 opponents.
Looking ahead to the quarter-final, the Kent-based teenager said: “I didn’t expect to be here at all.
“I feel very confident in my game and in each match I am growing and learning new things.
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“The best thing I’m doing is taking each day and not getting ahead of myself at all, looking after what I can control, and I think that is working very well.”
Much has been made of the British star so far, as she looks to continue her rapid rise.
She was ranked 361st in mid-June and, fresh from receiving her A-Level results, but she could even move into the top 50 and become British number one if she beats the Olympic champion.
British tennis legend Andy Murray issued a warning to her fans after she reached the final of the WTA Chicago 125 event.
Murray, a three-time Grand Slam winner, said: “Lots of people in British tennis have got high hopes for her.
“I’ve seen her around training and practicing and I’ve hit with her myself.
“I have a lot of belief in her game and her potential. Mentally, I think she’s in a very good place.
“I think she’s very switched on.”
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He warned fans: “I don’t think we should be making comparisons with other players, everyone has their own path.
“But she’s certainly heading in the right direction and I’m sure she’ll continue to move up the rankings.
Raducanu certainly proved she has a very levelheaded approach ‒ she chose not to travel to lower-level tournaments abroad last year, instead opting to combine her tennis ambitions with her A Levels.
Studying at the prestigious Newstead Wood School in Orpington, which has produced the likes of Team GB star Dina Asher-Smith and actress Gemma Chan in recent years, she achieved an A* in Mathematics and an A in Economics.
Despite Murray’s request for comparisons not to be made, they inevitably were.
After Raducanu stormed past Shelby Rogers on Monday in a 6-2, 6-1 annihilation, the world’s best started singing her praises.
Martina Navratilova, widely considered one of the greatest tennis players of all time with 18 Grand Slam wins, told Amazon Prime: “She’s a superstar in the making.
“You don’t want to put too much pressure on her but she’s got it.
“You saw it the first time you saw Nadal. You saw it the first time you saw Djokovic.”
Describing Raducanu, she finished: “She is just born for it.”
Only Serena Williams and Steffi Graf have won more Grand Slams than Ms. Navratilova.
Emma Raducanu bids for a place in the US Open semi-finals on Wednesday afternoon against Belinda Becnic. Coverage begins at 3:30pm on Amazon Prime, and radio commentary will also be available on BBC 5Live.
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