Emma Raducanu has made an impressive debut at the Australian Open beating Sloane Stephens in the first round but admits she ‘gave it all she had’.
The young Brit took the tennis world by storm last year reaching the fourth round of Wimbledon and winning the US Open on her first two Grand Slam outings.
In doing so she became the first qualifier to ever win the US Open and was awarded an MBE for her services to tennis at the end of 2021.
Since winning the US title, she has only played four tournaments losing in the first round of three of them, but she showed no signs of doubt against Stephens winning the first set in an incredible 17 minutes, with Sloane only winning four points all set.
Sloane returned to form taking the second set 6-2, but Raducanu showed her class, winning the final set 6-1.
A visibly relieved Radcanu said after the match that she put everything out there and was pleased to have made it through.
“I think that both me and Sloane really put everything out there and gave it all we had and I thought it was a really high quality match with some very long rallies,” said Raducanu.
“I’m very happy to have come through against such a great champion like her.
“I think it was a tough match up for a first round, I was just very happy, I knew that there was going to be some very long rallies. Her athleticism is really up there so, I had to work extremely hard for my points but I’m so happy to have got through.”
When asked about her own performance, the teenager said although she was incredibly pleased with her specatular 6-0 bagel in the first set, she knew it wouldn’t all be that easy.
“I was very pleased, coming out in the first set I thought I played some very good tennis with very little unforced errors.
“But of course there was going to be some adversity and the long rallies, she was just edging through with her defence.
“So I’m happy to have regrouped again. I don’t think the score really reflected the level out there, I was really feeling it and just focusing on getting every single ball landing between the lines. ”
Raducanu will now play Montenegrin Danka Kovinic in the next round.
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