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Rafael Nadal says Emma Raducanu is 'great for our sport' as he tells critics to be patient

Emma Raducanu may have her critics, but Rafael Nadal is not one of them and he has told them off for doubting her.
Emma Raducanu practicing at Wimbledon

Rafael Nadal says Emma Raducanu is 'great for our sport' as he urged people to give her time to realise her potential.

Raducanu has had a tough few months since winning the US Open as a qualifier, with the expectations on her going through the roof.

She has also been battling injury as well as all the usual challenges facing a teenager trying to find their way in elite sport.

Nadal knows of them better than most after turning professional at just 15-years-old, and he says he counts himself as a fan of Raducanu - just as she is of his.

"I think she is a great personality for our sport," Nadal said.

"She's having a tough year, but on the other hand she's already won a Grand Slam at a very early stage in her career, which I think will give her peace of mind to keep improving over time. I hope she gets more opportunities soon.

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Rafael Nadal has experience of what Emma Raducanu is going through. He was also just 19-years-old when he won his first major, and it wasn't really until two years later when he started to win regular Grand Slam titles.

However, he feels he is not in a position to give her any advice, simply because he doesn't know her well enough.

"I'm not a big fan of giving advice, really," he said. "I think people close to [Emma Raducanu] usually have the best advice because they know her personal situation.

"I've never had much interaction with her, but her triumph at the last US Open was impressive. "I watched the final and she played in a way that was hard to believe.

"From there, it's hard to deal with all that success at [such an early] point in your life, but I wish her all the best."

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