‘Unbelievably complete’ Emma Raducanu backed to be ‘a huge threat at Wimbledon to anyone’

Ewan West
Emma Raducanu during a practice session at Wimbledon in 2024
Emma Raducanu looks on during a practice session at Wimbledon in 2024

Tennis great Mats Wilander has described Emma Raducanu as “unbelievably complete” and backed the Brit to be a “huge threat to anyone” at the 2024 Wimbledon Championships.

The former world No 1 also revealed he does not view Raducanu as a player who has already won a Grand Slam because he feels her US Open title run was “an out-of-body experience.”

Raducanu will make her third Wimbledon appearance at this year’s Championships, having missed last year’s tournament through injury.

The 21-year-old, who is currently ranked 168th, is competing as a wildcard and will face world No 22 Ekaterina Alexandrova in a tough opening round contest on Monday.

In 2021, Raducanu reached the fourth round on her Wimbledon main draw debut as an 18-year-old wildcard two months before she stunned the tennis world with her triumph at the US Open as a qualifier. The Brit reached the second round at Wimbledon in 2022.

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Raducanu enters Wimbledon in impressive form on grass courts after reaching the semi-finals in Nottingham and the quarter-finals in Eastbourne.

Speaking to Eurosport, Wilander recalled thinking Raducanu was a complete player during her debut Wimbledon campaign.

“I remember watching Emma Raducanu at Wimbledon just a few months before she won the US Open,” said the Swede.

“I actually had a chat with her coach at the time, and I was telling him that I can’t believe how complete she is. She’s unbelievably complete. She can do everything.

“And then, of course, that was a famous Wimbledon [in 2021] when she had to stop her match [against Ajla Tomljanovic in the fourth round]. Then she goes on and she wins the US Open a couple of months later.

“I think it’s really important for us, and mainly for her and for her coach, to look at what she’s able to do today on a tennis court. When I look at her, she’s able to do everything. I’m not looking at her as someone who already has won a Grand Slam.

“That was an out-of-body experience for Raducanu. It was an out-of-body experience for every player that she beat that week because she was a qualifier. So all of the players she beat were supposed to beat her. They lost to the underdog.

“I think Emma has tried herself to say – which is basically what I’m saying – ‘I sometimes wish I didn’t win the US Open’. Well, I don’t think you can say that because you made so much money winning the US Open that now you can afford to go to the tournaments you want to go to.

“You can afford to pay one or two tennis coaches. You can afford to travel with a full team with a staff of however many you want, and that should help her tennis.

“If she is just able to forget about having won the US Open but take the benefit from it, which is the circumstances that she has surrounding her these days and the ability to come back from many, many surgeries, [that] has made it easier for her because she financially is very secure.

“Being ranked where she has been ranked the last three years, well, there are no other players [at that level] that are financially secure, but she is. If she uses it the right way, I think she’s going to be back.

“I’m not saying she’s going win Grand Slam tournaments, but I think she’s going to be a threat in many Grand Slam tournaments going forward.”

The seven-time Grand Slam winner also gave his assessment of Raducanu’s Wimbledon hopes.

“Technically, I think grass might be the best surface that she will play on for her own tennis,” Wilander added.

“She’s a huge threat at Wimbledon to anyone. Though winning at home is very, very difficult, but she is so good on grass and on fast, hard courts, in my eyes.”

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