“Going to Get the Pressure”: Former World No.3 Fears Emma Raducanu Might Follow Naomi Osaka’s Path

Published 09/18/2021, 2:14 PM EDT
Sep 11, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Emma Raducanu of Great Britain hits a forehand 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


18-year-old Emma Raducanu created history at the US Open 2021. The emerging star became the first qualifier to win a Grand Slam when she lifted the major in New York. Interestingly, she didn’t lose a single set in her whole campaign.

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In a recent interview to the LBC News, Former World No.3 Sue Barker highlighted that Emma Raducanu is going to get a lot of pressure after her US Open 2021 victory. However, she feels confident that it should not bother her much.

“We have to remember that Emma is going to suddenly get the pressure and the expectation, she has to have that. Personally, the way she’s handling herself, it’s not going to affect her. Hopefully I’m right, with it comes that,” said Barker in the interview.

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Naomi Osaka of Japan gestures after missing a shot against Leylah Annie Fernandez. Day five of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Barker emphasized that Raducanu should not become the next Naomi Osaka and must not lose her form and gameplay because of mental health issues. She claimed that even though the Japanese star has four Grand Slam titles, her game is slowly fading away.

“You mention Naomi Osaka, she was only 20 when she won the US Open and she said it changed her life, changed her life in a way she didn’t like. Now, we’re possibly losing her from the game a few years later, which is really sad to see,” added the former French Open winner.

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“Needs to be protected”- Sue Barker on Emma Raducanu

Barker mentioned that because of social media, the players today, are under a tremendous amount of pressure. Thus, she stated that Raducanu’s team needs to protect her from that pressure so that fans can continue to witness her brilliant gameplay.

Emma Raducanu of the United Kingdom hits to Shelby Rogers of the USA. Day eight of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

“Particularly in this world, not when I was playing in the 1970s, the way social media is used to put pressure on athletes it’s so much harder. She needs to be protected. She has a very good team around her and her parents seem so brilliant in the way they’re taking her through, letting her do her A Levels, just managing her career,” concluded Barker.

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After winning the US Open 2021, Raducanu has climbed to the 23rd spot in the WTA rankings. Will she be able to finish the year among the top 20 WTA players?

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Emma Raducanu Divulges Details of Her Meeting With Lewis Hamilton at 2021 Met Gala

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Anshul Singh

1386 articles

Anshul Singh is a tennis author at EssentiallySports, currently pursuing Journalism Honors from Delhi University. Having significant experience with content, Anshul has authored over 500 tennis articles. He has previously worked as a writer and an editor for DU Express, penning riveting articles on sports, politics, and culture.

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