“Going to Be Tough Physically”: Emma Raducanu Wary of Challenging Conditions at Indian Wells 2021

Published 10/06/2021, 7:08 AM EDT
Sep 6, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Emma Raducanu of the United Kingdom serves to Shelby Rogers of the USA on day eight of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports


With the 2021 Indian Wells about to kick-start, all eyes are on the newly crowned US Open champion, Emma Raducanu. Last month, the 18-year-old became the first qualifier to claim a Grand Slam title by defeating Leylah Fernandez in the US Open final.

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The British tennis star, who received a wildcard for Indian Wells, has been given a first-round bye for the WTA 1000 event. Raducanu faces either Maria Serrano or Aliaksandra Sasnovich in her opening round match.

Sep 11, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Emma Raducanu of Great Britain celebrates with the championship trophy after her match against Leylah Fernandez of Canada (not pictured) in the women’s singles final on day thirteen of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Emma Raducanu to make her debut at Indian Wells

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During a recent interview with Eurosport, Raducanu mentioned being excited about competing at Indian Wells. With Raducanu making a debut at the prestigious tournament, the crowds’ expectations are high, which certainly puts more pressure on her.

“It’s my first time playing in Indian Wells and it’s a beautiful place. I just can’t wait to get started. I love the facilities, everything is just so nice to be around,” said Raducanu.

The British teenager was also quick to acknowledge the challenging conditions in Indian Wells. Due to soaring mercury levels and dry air, the ball has a tendency to bounce higher.

Sep 11, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Emma Raducanu of Great Britain celebrates after her match against Leylah Fernandez of Canada (not pictured) in the women’s singles final on day thirteen of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

In addition, owing to the slow court speed, Raducanu feels the rallies would be longer and the matches are likely to get physically demanding.

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“The air is very dry so it’s going to be tough physically and it’s quite hot at the moment. The courts are slower and high bouncing so it’s probably going to be long rallies, and the balls get quite fluffy pretty quickly,” said Raducanu.

After parting ways with her coach Andrew Richardson, Raducanu has been training with Jeremy Bates, the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) national women’s coach, at Indian Wells.

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Meanwhile, Raducanu is in search of a long-term coach who has WTA tour experience. As per reports, the names of Darren Cahill, Wim Fissette, Esteban Carril, Iain Hughes, and 3-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray have been doing the rounds as probables for the job of Raducanu’s long-term coach.

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Kshitij Tayal

492 articles

Kshitij Tayal is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having played district-level tennis competitions, Kshitij is also a tenured journalist of the sport with over four years of experience. At EssentiallySports, he pens down some thought-provoking pieces on players and tournaments across the ATP and WTA.

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