“I Mean Exactly What I Said”: John McEnroe Doubles Down on Wimbledon Comments on Emma Raducanu

Published 09/16/2021, 8:45 AM EDT
Britain’s Emma Raducanu poses with the U.S. Open tennis championship trophy after her match against Leylah Fernandez of Canada in the women’s singles final the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York, U.S., September 11, 2021. Picture taken September 11, 2021. Michael Frey/Handout via REUTERS THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY.


British teenager Emma Raducanu has been in the limelight since her astonishing rise this year. The youngster has had the best moments of her life over the past couple of weeks. She did the unthinkable by winning her first Grand Slam title at the US Open 2021. 

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However, when she competed at the Wimbledon Championships, American legend John McEnroe was critical of her. After Emma Raducanu retired midway from her match, he was skeptical and felt she retired from the match as she was losing. Recently, John stated that he sticks with his statements made back then. 

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 TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

The former Grand Slam winner stated, “I meant exactly what I said,” he told CNN, referring to his comments in July.”I tried to relate it in a small way to my experience when I first went to Wimbledon also at 18 and managed to qualify as Emma did. There’s a lot of great upsides, but there’s also pressure you put on yourself and expectations that others put on you.”

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John McEnroe was in a similar position as Emma Raducanu 

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He justified his statements by relating it to his situation back in his playing days. At the age of 18, there is a lot of pressure playing in a major Grand Slam. Having said that, he was supportive of her. He also blamed the British media. 

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – SEPTEMBER 22: Captains Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe enjoy a moment before the last match between Alexander Zverev of Team Europe and Milos Raonic of Team World during Day Three of the Laver Cup 2019 at Palexpo on September 22, 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland. The Laver Cup will see six players from the rest of the World competing against their counterparts from Europe. Team World is captained by John McEnroe and Team Europe is captained by Bjorn Borg. The tournament runs from September 20-22. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images for Laver Cup)

The 62-year-old further added, “Compared to a lot of other things I’ve said in the past, I mean that was to me as vanilla as it comes. I was very supportive of her, I thought, at the time. You know the papers over in England. Sometimes they, like, make a big deal out of, to me, nothing.”

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At the moment, the youngster should enjoy this moment and one can only say that she has a bright future ahead of her. We wish her all the best for the upcoming matches and for the future seasons. 

Watch this story: Top Seeds Naomi Osaka, John Isner, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Andrey Rublev and Others Who Faced Huge Upsets at US Open

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Rohan Kollare

1167 articles

Rohan Kollare is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. Rohan has a post-graduate diploma in Sports Management and a trophy cabinet adorned with accolades won in district and state-level tennis competitions. He has previously worked in Content Operations for Disney’s Hotstar for over a year, covering tennis and Formula One.

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