Friday, June 21, 2024

French Open: Emma Raducanu will miss Grand Slam to focus on fitness

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Britain’s Emma Raducanu has withdrawn from the French Open, just 24 hours before qualifying was due to begin.

The 21-year-old is not injured, but has decided to skip Roland Garros to train and give herself a “chance to keep fit for the rest of the year”.

Raducanu was not awarded a wildcard for the clay-court Grand Slam and her ranking was not high enough to gain direct entry into the main draw.

Qualifying starts on Monday and the French Open begins on 26 May.

“It’s important for me to keep laying on the foundations, and I will use the time to do a healthy block before the grass and subsequent hard-court seasons to give myself a chance to keep fit for the rest of the year,” said the 2021 US Open champion.

The Briton has not played since losing in the first round of the Madrid Open last month.

After her straight-set defeat by Argentine qualifier Maria Lourdes Carle, Raducanu said she was “mentally and emotionally exhausted”.

Raducanu has since been practising at the National Tennis Centre in London, but the manner of that heavy defeat is said to have affected her confidence after an excellent start to the clay season.

She won both matches for her country as Great Britain beat France to qualify for November’s Billie Jean King Cup Finals, and reached the quarter-finals in Stuttgart, where her run was only ended by world number one Iga Swiatek.

Raducanu is ranked 212 in the world, following wrist and ankle operations last year, but was third alternate for the French Open thanks to a protected ranking of 103.

She has not confirmed whether she will play next month’s Nottingham Open, the first WTA event of the grass-court season.

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