Wimbledon: Emma Raducanu requires patience from public, says Tim Henman


Tim Henman has urged British fans to stay patient with Emma Raducanu ahead of this year’s Wimbledon

The teenager made the fourth round at the All England Club last year, after accepting a wildcard for the main draw. 

Following her impressive Slam debut, Raducanu stunned the world when she stormed to victory at the US Open without dropping a set. 

But since her triumph in New York, her performances have been underwhelming and the 19-year-old is yet to reach beyond the quarter-finals of any event this season. 

To make matters worse, the Brit has been plagued with injuries of late and has been struggling with a side injury in the build-up to this tournament. 

Raducany’s ability ‘still there’ 

Speaking to Tennis365, Henman stressed that Raducanu has the talent to be successful in the future and that she shouldn’t worry about the weight of expectation on her shoulders. 

“There is an expectation there, but it is something you can’t control,” Henman said. 

“I was getting blamed for the weather and when that happens, you know expectations are a little too high! She has got a very wise head on young shoulders and the two things she can control are her preparation and performance.

Emma Raducanu French Open

“That is what she should be focusing on. How she played in New York [at the US Open] was incredible. You think of all the greats in our sport and no one has ever qualified and made the final of a Slam, let alone reached a final and won it.

“The ability is there and we just have to stay patient. If things don’t go according to plan at Wimbledon this year, she has got many more ahead of her.” 

Is Raducanu fit to play? 

Raducanu hasn’t played since retiring at the Nottingham Open and there were doubts over her fitness ahead of the competition. 

The Brit cancelled a public training session a couple of days ago, prompting rumours she may not be able to compete this week. Yet, the US Open champion has confirmed she is physically fit and raring to go. 

“I think that this week was a good build-up,” Raducanu said. “There were moments earlier on in the week we weren’t really sure. We were sort of going to see how the week goes. But it went pretty well. Now it’s full steam ahead. Right now I’m fit. I’m ready to go. I’m looking forward to it. That’s it.

“I’ve been managing it since Nottingham. I took two weeks off. Yesterday we just had to react to the situation. I already practised in the morning, so we all collectively thought it was the best decision to pass on the afternoon session as well and stay fresh and ready to go.”

Tricky opening match 

Raducanu faces Alison Van Uytvanck in her opening match in what promises to be a tough opening test. 

The Belgian is ranked inside the top 50 and is a more than accomplished player on grass. 

While Raducanu is more than capable of beating Van Uytvanck, much will depend on what condition her body is in. 

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