Emma Raducanu feels benefit of mother’s touch as she starts American hard-court swing in style

·2-min read
Emma Raducanu starts American hard-court swing in style with straight-sets win - AP
Emma Raducanu starts American hard-court swing in style with straight-sets win - AP

Emma Raducanu might be one of the most high-profile figures in British sport but that has not stopped her mother from nagging her about spending too much time on her mobile phone.

The British No 1 made an ideal start to her preparations to defend her US Open title by sweeping past Louisa Chirico at the Citi Open in Washington.

Her mother Renee was in the stands to watch as she bounced back from her disappointing second-round exit at Wimbledon in impressive fashion, beating the American qualifier 6-4, 6-2.

“It is great to have my mum around,” she said. “She hasn’t necessarily spent the most amount of time with me but she is just like every mum. She gets on me if I’m on my phone, if I go to bed too late, if I am having too many cupcakes but she is also really good. She always insists to do my laundry, we are hand drying it in the hotel room but it is a lot of fun to have her travel with me.”

Raducanu, who is trialing Russian coach Dmitry Tursunov this week, showed no signs of the physical issues which have plagued her 2022 season and was particularly dominant on serve against Chirico. She won 76 per cent of points on her first and second serves and broke her opponent’s serve four times.

“It definitely feels really good to get a win here in DC,” Raducanu said. “After not playing for quite a bit after Wimbledon, or many matches at all this year, it’s a really nice feeling just to get on the board.

“I think playing any first round is always pretty challenging. Then when you’re not necessarily that match-sharp, small things you don’t necessarily get right. It’s just important to stay calm.”