Emma Raducanu has announced when she will next compete on British shores. The teen will play at next month’s Rothesay Classic in Birmingham, marking her first tournament at home since winning the US Open last September.
The grass-court event will help the British number one warm up for the Wimbledon Championships at the end of June. Speaking about her entry into the tournament, she said: “I can’t wait to play in Britain again and I’m delighted to be competing at the Rothesay Classic in Birmingham in the 40th year of this terrific showcase for women’s tennis. It will be great to get back on to the grass at home, where the backing of the British fans was so fantastic.”
Before the world number 12 makes a triumphant homecoming, she continues to navigate her way on the bruising and unforgiving clay. After an encouraging showing in Madrid, she is due to make her debut at the Italian Open against Bianca Andreescu later today.
The Canadian can relate to Raducanu’s US Open success having won the tournament in 2019. She said watching thr Brit during her remarkable success last year left her desperate to play against her.
“I watched her win the US Open, and I was really happy for her because I won it basically around her age,” she said, as quoted by tennisworldusa. “Obviously she was playing a Canadian (Leylah Fernandez), so that was really nice too. She’s a really great player, so I’m expecting a really good match.
“I remember saying, ‘I want to play her,’ and it looks like I got my wish.” Raducanu revealed that she was also watching closely in 2019: “Yeah, I watched that tournament,” she said.
“I thought Bianca was playing incredibly well. I think her physicality is one of her strengths, how good she is moving, how low she stays. I think that’s really cool. And probably something I can learn from myself.”
There is a slight worry for the youngster heading into the match as the Bromley local is still ‘managing’ a back injury suffered in her round of 16 defeat to Anhelina Kalinina in Madrid. She admitted she’s still adapting to the intensity of longer matches but believes she is in suitable condition ahead of the showcase in Rome.
She said: “I think it’s just coming from a lot of intensity and overload. My back, I’m managing it. Like it’s fine. But it’s just trying to adapt again to the long matches, to the intensity. I think that all of the small sorts of niggles I’m getting, they’re all related and connected to each other when something is overcompensating, perhaps. Yeah, we’ll see.”