Emma Raducanu: How the US Open draw could look for the defending champion

Emma Raducanu's US Open draw

Emma Raducanu will begin her US Open title defence against world number 44 Alize Cornet. 

The veteran French star has won six WTA titles across her career and reached the Australian Open quarter-finals earlier this year. 

Cornet also defeated world number one Iga Swiatek at Wimbledon in July –– ending the 21-year-old’s remarkable 37-match winning streak. 

It’s no doubt a tough opening match for Raducanu, who is seeded 11th for the competition. 

Last year, the Brit faced just one player inside the world’s top 10 but she has been dealt a tricky hand on paper this time around. 

Indeed, if the teenager does defeat Cornet, things are not likely to get any easier. 

How could Raducanu’s draw shape up? 

In the second round, the Brit may end up facing Czech star Kateřina Siniaková. 

The 26-year-old beat Raducanu at the Miami Open this year, though she has never reached beyond the third round in New York. 

An enticing third-round tie could see the Brit face two-time US Open champion Naomi Osaka.

However, the 24-year-old is not seeded for the tournament and faces Australian Open finalist Danielle Collins in her opening match. 

Raducanu’s fourth-round opponent would likely be one of Aryna Sabalenka or Elena Rybakina.

Sabalenka was formerly ranked second in the world, while Rybakina won her maiden Grand Slam title at Wimbledon last month. 

Emma Raducanu

If recent majors are indicative of anything, then predicting the quarter-finalists will be an extremely tough ask. 

Yet, if we were to base Raducanu’s potential last eight opponent on rankings alone then fourth seed Paula Badosa is the name that emerges. 

Unfortunately for Raducanu, she has ended up on the same side of the draw as Swiatek and would meet the Polish star in the semi-finals if both make it that far. 

Swiatek is yet to claim a Grand Slam title on the hard-court surface but is the favourite to win this year’s competition in New York. 

Raducanu

Who’s on the other side of the draw? 

The bottom half of the draw appears wide open, with a number of potential contenders. 

Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit is seeded second but has not won a tournament since the St. Petersberg trophy in February. 

Meanwhile, beaten Wimbledon finalist Ons Jabeur is seeded fifth and will fancy her chances of putting together another run at a Slam. 

Ons Jabeur

The Tunisian is currently second in the Race to the WTA Finals but did lose in the round of 16 in Cincinnati earlier this month. 

Teenager Coco Gauff is another to watch out for. The American will have the crowd on her side and is fifth in the Race to the Finals standings. 

Don’t be surprised to see former world number one Simona Halep go deep in the competition as well. 

The Romanian hasn’t won a major since 2019 but has returned to the world’s top 10 under the tutelage of Serena Williams’ ex-coach Patrick Mouratoglou.

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