Six months ago, British teenager Emma Raducanu rose to become the new star in the tennis sky with her triumph at the US Open. Success opened many doors for her off the field, but reality quickly overtook the Briton on the field. Criticism of their development continues to escalate.
Emma Raducanu’s world is still fine on Instagram these days. The shooting star can be seen either training, traveling, with a group of fans, playing golf and jet skiing or on glossy photos for one of their numerous top-class sponsors – always smiling and in a good mood, of course.
But the good mood and smile is the Briton who made a sharp rise in the last year and more to new star in the tennis sky was announced, not infrequently passed in the last few months. None of this can be seen in Instagram’s illusory world. Their defeat on the field is cleverly hidden. In the real world, though, they’re dominating the headlines.
Raducanus’ first round loss in Miami to Czech Katerina Siniakova, 40 places down the world rankings, was just the latest in a series of setbacks. Since Britain’s US Open triumph last September, she has lost eight out of twelve matches, often losing to opponents who were actually only meant as a staging post en route to the next round.
“The respect she gained in the locker room during the US Open is gradually disappearing,” said former professional player Daniela Hantuchova in light of the many disappointments already over Raducanus’ good reputation. The Slovak decided that hard work on the training ground was the only way out of the crisis. But some believe that the 19-year-old neglects this very work.
Sharp Raducanu critique from Kim Clijsters
Raducanu is repeatedly accused of worrying too much about his sponsors and not enough about his tennis game. It’s not just anonymous Instagram users who get carried away by sometimes wild insults against the teenager. Former players now also sharply criticize the young Briton. For example, the Belgian Kim Clijsters.
A few days ago, she sees a strong focus and the will to keep getting better with players like the Pole Iga Swiatek, Clijsters said: “And then we see other players taking a step back and saying, ‘Oh, I’m won a Grand “. Slam. I did it. Now the sponsors come and I’m treated like a princess everywhere ‘. “The Belgian did not explicitly mention Raducanus’ name, but it is clear who her criticism was directed at.
The question is to what extent this criticism is justified. With today’s knowledge and prize money of 21.5 million euros, it’s easy for Clijsters to speak. Is that why she declined sponsorship deals worth millions at the age of 19? And can one ask about that of a player like Emma Raducanu, who was largely unknown until a few months ago? To bet everything that your career will go according to plan and that many more tournament victories will follow? It would be an extraordinarily brave bet with high stakes.
Raducanu responds to sponsorship criticism
In Raducanus’ eyes, the accusations against her are also unfounded. She also knows that after her deals with Porsche, Dior, Tiffany’s, Evian, British Airways and Co. has opened the door wide open to critics. However, she described the extent and manner as “unfair”.
“Maybe people in the news or on social media can just see that I’ve got this deal or that deal. But it’s misleading because I train five, six hours a day and I’m at the facility 12 hours a day. And if I publish then a picture of me in a car that says: She does not focus on tennis, “Raducanu said, describing his point of view.
At the same time, she admitted that the criticism left its mark on her. In the meantime, however, she is no longer so susceptible to disturbing fire from outside. “And in the end, I feel like it’s my time [mit den Sponsoren] is quite limited. I have no crazy days and spend three or four days on it every quarter. It really is not that much, ‘the Briton reasoned to himself.
Williams coach defends Raducanu
The 19-year-old has few arguments against criticism of her disappointing sporting performance in recent months. In many matches, Raducanu played straight with her opponent and created chances to win, but in crucial moments she missed the big points and lost. It was different then in New York. “That’s why it’s such a brutal sport. It’s a massive learning curve for them now,” former pro Tim Henman said after Raducanus’ Aus in Miami.
For the successful coach Patrick Mouratoglou, who led Serena Williams to several triumphs, it is far too early to write off Raducanu. He demanded patience as he was dealing with the shooting star.
“I think she can win more Grand Slams. But it’s still very early. She won in New York because she played without pressure. Now all of a sudden the pressure is on her. And when you’re under pressure, show your weaknesses. She is not ready for it yet. Will she be in the future? I think so, “he said, revealing what could be the only recipe that would silence Raducanus’ critics: victories on the field.