Emma Raducanu wins on comeback at Portoroz
Emma Raducanu put in an assured display as she downed Dayana Yastremska at the Slovenia Open after the Ukrainian retired one game away from a straight sets defeat.
Raducanu started well putting pressure on Yastremska’s serve in the first game on the match before holding serve to love.
In just the third game of the match, Raducanu earned the first of the four breaks of serve she would notch in her opening round clash.
Raducanu held to love again to go out to a 3-1 lead in the first set and looked set to run away with it when she broke Yastremska for the second game in a row.
The British No 1 wasn’t able to consolidate her advantage as she immediately suffered a break in a poor service game.
It would prove to be the only real blot on Raducanu’s copybook on the day though as she secured a third consecutive break off Yastremska before holding serve to secure the first set 6-2.
Raducanu took control of the second set with a break of serve in game three but was made to sweat top hold off a fightback from Yastremska.
The 2021 US Open winner had to save three break points to stay ahead in the second stanza before the match came to a sudden and somewhat anti-climactic ending.
With Raducanu two points away from victory and looking for all money a sure thing, Yastremska apparently suffered a wrist injury.
After a long medical timeout, Yastremska was forced the throw in the towel and concede the match to Raducanu who had been keeping warm in case her opponent recovered.
“No one wants to win by retirement, but Dayana’s an extremely ferocious competitor. I was fighting the whole way through and I’m happy to be in the next round,” Raducanu said on the court.
Raducanu dropped 72 spots in the rankings after her early exit from the US Open ended her year long stay in the top 50.
However she was handed the top-seeding for the Slovenia Open based on her ranking prior to the year’s final Grand Slam.
Raducanu will meet either American Elizabeth Mandlik or Germany’s Anna-Lena Friedsam in the second round in Portoroz.
She is one of two British hopes in the Solvenia Open field with 23-year-old Jodie Burrage battling her way through qualifiers to join Raducanu in the main draw.
Burrage will face Serbia’s Aleksandra Krunić in a first round match scheduled to get underway at 11:15 (BST) on Tuesday 13 September.
Trio of former World No 1s go straight into Australian Open draw with Special Rankings and wildcard
Naomi Osaka, Angelique Kerber and Caroline Wozniacki have been handed main draw entries.
Brisbane International sports ‘best-ever’ field with nine Grand Slam winners headed to Queensland in January
The Brisbane International in 2024 will include nine Grand Slam champions.
Historic clay-swing tournament already drawing big names with Jessica Pegula and Ons Jabeur entered
Ons Jabeur and Jessica Pegula have signed up for the Charleston Open.
Iga Swiatek’s 2024 tennis schedule: Where will the world No 1 begin her new season?
Which tournaments are likely to feature on Iga Swiatek’s 2024 tennis schedule?
Novak Djokovic takes protégé Hamad Medjedovic under his wing again in another act of kindness
Hamad Medjedovic to join Novak Djokovic in Dubai.
Who are Rafael Nadal’s sponsors? Nike show they are still behind the Raging Bull for his comeback campaign with $10 million backing
Find out who backs the Raging Bull, Rafael Nadal.
Ben Shelton thrives on personal attention from Roger Federer’s On Sports
Who backs rising star Ben Shelton?
Tennis legend Chris Evert gives heartbreaking health update – ‘This is a diagnosis I never wanted to hear’
Chris Evert has started another round of chemotherapy.
Roger Federer shares his wishes for great rivals Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic
“I can only say the best things about them,” says Roger Federer.