Emma Raducanu on finding a coach: “I’m not going to rush into anything”
The 18-year-old US Open champion says she’s confident she can cope with things on her own until she finds the right person
The past few months may have been a whirlwind for Emma Raducanu, from her Wimbledon debut through to her stunning US Open victory, but the 18-year-old Briton says she’s in no hurry to appoint a full-time coach.
Aided by Nigel Sears at Wimbledon, Raducanu had Briton Andrew Richardson with her at the US Open as she stormed through qualifying to win the title to claim an unlikely first slam title. The deal with Richardson was always a temporary one, though, and as she begins her first event since New York at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, she will have Jeremy Bates alongside her, if only in his role as head of women’s tennis at the Lawn Tennis Association.
And though she might have been tempted to snap up one of the big names who might be available on a long-term basis – Darren Cahill, for example – Raducanu says she’s in no hurry, confident in her own ability and keen to make sure she makes the right decision eventually.
“Jeremy is part of women’s tennis at the LTA, so while he’s here, he’s helping me out,” Raducanu told reporters from Indian Wells on Tuesday. “But going forward, I’m just going to wait and try find the right person. I’m not going to rush into anything. And I want to make sure that I make the right decision.”
The way Raducanu plotted her way through the draw at Flushing Meadows suggests that she is already a good problem-solver and the confidence of winning that first Grand Slam title is still oozing through her veins.
“At the moment, I’m confident,” she said. “I know, even though I’m quite young, I’ve got a lot of experience banked, and at the end of the day, you’re out there on your own and you have to be your own coach on the court. So I’m pretty comfortable. I’m just looking for the general things in a coach, really, someone that you get along with well and someone who can push you.”
Raducanu has a first-round bye at the BNP Paribas Open and will open her campaign against either Aliaksandra Sasnovich or Maria Camila Osario Serrano.
Should she come through that, she’s likely to meet former world No1 Simona Halep in a blockbuster third-round clash, with added interest since Halep just happens to be one of her biggest inspirations.
Being a US Open champion has already brought enormous attention to Raducanu, especially at home in Britain but the down to earth teenager seems ready to deal with everything that comes her way.
“I don’t really want to change anything,” she said. “What got me to this point is not thinking anything differently. So then if I just put additional thoughts in my head, I would just create a problem, I think, so I’m just going to keep going about my business and staying the same.”