Defending champion Emma Raducanu loses in first spherical

August 31, 2022

NEW YORK — Emma Raducanu’s US Open defence got here to an finish within the first spherical as she misplaced to Alize Cornet in straight units on Tuesday.

Raducanu surprised the sporting world final yr when she went from qualifier to winner of the ladies’s singles in an unbelievable fortnight in New York. However she got here unstuck in opposition to Cornet, who was taking part in in her 63rd straight Grand Slam. Cornet defeated Raducanu 6-3, 6-3 in 1hr 42 minutes.

“I am clearly dissatisfied to lose first spherical,” Raducanu mentioned. “Yeah, I imply, credit score to Alize, she performed fairly nicely. I imply [it is] clearly actually disappointing, [I’m] actually unhappy to depart right here. It is most likely my favourite match.

“But in addition, I imply, in a method [I’m] pleased as a result of it is a clear slate. I will drop down the rankings. Climb my method again up.”

It was a match wherein each gamers struggled to carry serve in blustery circumstances on Louis Armstrong, and there have been 5 breaks of serve within the first set.

“I feel it was fairly windy,” Raducanu mentioned. “It was blowing, like, from back-to-front. It was fairly troublesome for me particularly to seek out my ball toss. I feel I used to be hitting various serves lengthy. I simply struggled to adapt to it actually.

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“And, I imply, it is one thing that each gamers must form of take care of. She simply handled it higher than me at the moment.”

Raducanu referred to as a medical timeout on the finish of the primary set for therapy on her proper hand, having suffered from blisters there throughout her apply session on Friday.

“I bought a brand new one,” Raducanu mentioned. “However, like, you recognize, you tape it up and transfer on it. It is a blister. Not a lot you are able to do about it.”

Cornet and Raducanu exchanged breaks initially of the second set however the important thing spell got here within the seventh recreation, when Cornet broke Raducanu’s serve to go 4-3 up. She held within the eighth and wanted only one match level to interrupt Raducanu once more and progress to the second spherical.

The victory is one other spotlight in Cornet’s yr, after she reached the quarterfinals of the Australian Open and defeated world No.1 Iga Swiatek at Wimbledon.

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For Raducanu, the defeat will see her fall within the WTA rankings as she loses 2030 factors she received right here final yr. That is her first full yr on the WTA Tour, and she or he has fallen within the second spherical on the Australian Open, Roland Garros and Wimbledon forward of this first-round exit at Flushing Meadows.

“This one clearly hurts a bit as a result of it is my favourite match and clearly like lots of feelings up to now yr,” she mentioned.

“Yeah, I imply, I am proud for placing myself on the market each match, each day. Like I do know I am pushing myself to be one of the best I can.”

She added: “I imply, in a method the goal will probably be off my again barely. Yeah, I simply have one other likelihood to claw my method again up there.”

Raducanu is uncertain of what her subsequent steps will probably be, and which tournaments she’ll play in for the remainder of the yr. She was additionally noncommittal on whether or not she’ll proceed working with coach Dmitry Tursunov, who’s been along with her for the previous six weeks.

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She feels her foremost focus of enchancment is to get a greater consistency over the course of subsequent yr.

“If I have a look at how a lot tennis I performed this yr, or coaching I’ve carried out, it is very, very minimal,” she mentioned.

“We, like, really counted the times.

“From, like, Rome to a bit after Wimbledon, I solely performed tennis for, like, 14 days in two months and a half or one thing. It was fairly wild.

“I feel a very powerful factor for me is simply consistency of those weeks, of coaching, of competing. You lose a match, you are on the apply courtroom like two days later or one thing. It is simply not having these massive chunks of gaps.”