Raducanu 'managing' back injury before Andreescu test in Rome

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Emma Raducanu is "managing" a back problem ahead of her first-round Internazionali d'Italia clash with Bianca Andreescu.

The reigning US Open champion exited the Madrid Open at the last-16 stage, going down in three sets to Anhelina Kalinina after struggling with an injury which she admitted had been "taking its toll".

Raducanu said in the aftermath of that 6-2 2-6 6-4 defeat that she would only have given herself a "five per cent chance" of advancing after suffering the injury, and expressed doubt over her ability to compete in Rome.

However, the 19-year-old now insists she will be able to cope on the clay in Italy, saying she needs to adapt to the intensity of top-level matches after suffering from several injury problems this year.

"I think it's just coming from a lot of intensity and overload" Raducanu said. "My back, I'm managing it.

"It's fine. But it's just trying to adapt again to the long matches, to the intensity. I think that all of the small sort of niggles I'm getting, they're all related and connected to each other, when something is overcompensating perhaps."

Raducanu's first assignment in Rome will see her face Canadian Andreescu, who also won the US Open as a teenager when she shocked Serena Williams with a straight-sets final victory in 2019.

That contest will mark the first head-to-head meeting between the two players, and Raducanu was looking forward to facing the former world number four as she highlighted the contrast between conditions in Rome and Madrid.

"Of course, we are both pretty good players," Raducanu said. "It's going to be a good match-up. She's a great athlete and obviously a champion. She's got a really good attitude. I think it's going to be interesting.

"I think here is completely opposite [to Madrid]. It's quite heavy and slow, so there's going to be a lot longer points. It will be interesting to see what the differences are. But I can already feel them on the court tennis-wise."

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