Emma Raducanu shrugs off pressure talk after Wimbledon exit: ‘I’m still 19. It’s a joke. I literally won a Slam’
Emma Raducanu has dismissed suggestions that she was under pressure to perform at Wimbledon, describing it as “a joke” as she is still at the beginning of her career.
Following her fairytale run at the US Open last September where she became the first qualifier – man or woman – to win a Grand Slam, Raducanu has gone an unknown teenager to one of the most-talked about players in tennis.
Naturally all eyes were on her at Wimbledon with many hoping she would produce a similar miracle at her home major, but it wasn’t to be as she exited in the second round, going down in straight sets against Caroline Garcia on Wednesday.
When asked about suggestions that she was under pressure to perform, the 19-year-old replied: “There’s no pressure. Like, why is there any pressure? I’m still 19. It’s a joke. I literally won a Slam.
“Yes, I have had attention. But I’m a Slam champion, so no one’s going to take that away from me. If anything, the pressure is on those who haven’t done that.”
Raducanu’s Wimbledon build-up was hampered by a side strain and she played only seven games at Nottingham and was forced to pull out of the Birmingham Classic.
While the injury did not hamper her, the lack of match practice was an issue.
“I didn’t feel anything out there,” she said. “I declared myself fully fit when I walked out onto the court on the first day.
“But I’ve played seven hours of tennis in a month. To even compete with these girls at this level and win a round I think is a pretty good achievement.
“Obviously it’s tough to lose any match but I think that Caroline played a great match. She is a great player. I struggled to find a way through her today.
“But it’s okay because, coming into this, I didn’t really have many expectations of myself. Playing on Centre Court again was a really positive experience for me.”
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