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Raducanu says she is only at 35% of her potential, but still has a long way to reach the top
The Briton says she feels she can become one of the best athletes on the WTA Tour
Considering that she thought she might not be able to even play in the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells because of illness and injury, Emma Raducanu will leave the desert with renewed confidence, her run to the last 16 proof she is on the right track again.
The 2021 US Open champion won three matches in a row for only the second time since that incredible victory in New York and it took the steamroller that is Iga Swiatek to stop her from going to the quarter-finals.
“It feels good, gives me confidence,” Raducanu told reporters. “I think especially because of where I was before this tournament, didn’t think I would even play, to be honest. But to have played and then won three rounds and beaten two amazing opponents, yeah, I’m very proud of myself.”
The Briton beat Danka Kovinic, Magda Linette and Beatriz Haddad-Maia to reach the fourth round but said Swiatek was physically too strong for her.
“Overall I feel like physically she is much further ahead than I am at this moment,” Raducanu said. “I think I was able to stay competitive in the beginning of the first set, and then I think the first three games took like over 20 minutes. And we were having some pretty epic rallies, and I actually think my defence got better. But that meant me running. Yeah, I think that she just kind of ground my down a bit.”
“I saw a taste of the level where No 1 is at physically and how she is at the corners, repetitive, relentless. Yeah, I just couldn’t take that.”
“I think I’m going to be one of the best athletes on Tour”
Raducanu has struggled with numerous injuries and niggles since her US Open win, with early defeats in big events dropping her down the rankings. The 20-year-old is set to rise to No 72 after Indian Wells and feels that in the bigger picture, she’s only just getting started.
“I would honestly say like 35%,” she said, when asked where she thought she was in terms of her potential. “When I’m telling you I haven’t trained, I haven’t trained.
“Physically I feel like that’s going to be one of my biggest assets. My team has spoken about it. I think that I’m going to be, like, one of the best athletes on the tour, and that’s going to be a big part of my game. I would say there is a very long way to go, but I’m definitely starting the right work now.”
Raducanu has a wildcard into the main draw of the Miami Open, which begins next week.