Emma Raducanu - US Open 2021, Marta Kostyuk - Australian Open 2023

Australian Open star suggests Emma Raducanu had an ‘easy draw’ to US Open title

Marta Kostyuk has moved into the first Grand Slam quarter-final of her career and has spoken about how Grand Slam draws can be very different, drawing comparisons to Emma Raducanu and Leylah Fernandez’s respective runs to the US Open final in 2021.

The Ukrainian beat Russian qualifier Maria Timofeeva, 6-2 6-1, to achieve her best ever result at the Australian Open or any senior major tournament.

It was the first time that Kostyuk has won a match in straight sets at the tournament this year, having saved a match point against Elise Mertens in the second round.

And the 21-year-old claimed that she deserved the easier match, “The first three matches that I had were extremely difficult. Today, for example, I had it much easier. I was, like: ‘Oh, okay, well deserved, you know’.

“Then we see. I don’t know. I have three more to go. We will see. Maybe I will sit here in one week and be like, Oh, you know, it was not that bad. It was actually easy. We will see.”

Kostyuk then went onto talk about how different Grand Slam draws can be, suggesting that Raducanu had an easier draw to the 2021 US Open final than Fernandez, “It’s every day and every slam and every tournament is so unique and so different. Everything is different. Someone can have a very easy draw, and someone can have extremely difficult.”

The 2017 Australian Open junior champion continued, “I have an easiest example of when Leylah and Emma were playing the final, what draw Leylah had and what draw Emma had. Emma, no offence, but Leylah was really fighting for her life every single match.

“I think there are players who really win this Grand Slam and they’re like: ‘Wow, I don’t think I will ever recover from this physically and emotionally’. There are players who are, like: ‘Oh, it was fine, I might do it again’. I think it’s so unique. I wish I experienced this to give you a proper answer, but I’m working for it. We will see.”

Kostyuk will now move onto the first Grand Slam quarter-final of her career, where she will play current US Open champion Coco Gauff on Tuesday.

Inside the baseline…

Marta Kostyuk showcased her potential from such a young age, so it is good to see her starting to fulfill some of that at this year’s Australian Open. In terms of her suggesting that Emma Raducanu had an easy draw to the US Open title compared to Leylah Fernandez, you do have to take into account that the Brit also had to play qualifying. It is undeniable that Fernandez had to beat more seeded players, but you can only beat those in front of you.

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Emma Raducanu and Leylah Fernandez’s 2021 US Open draw

With Kostyuk making comparisons to the Raducanu and Fernandez’s draws to the US Open final, we have decided to list them for you:

Emma Raducanu

Qualifying Round One – Beat Bibiane Schoofs, 6-1 6-2

Qualifying Round Two – Beat Mariam Bolkvadze, 6-3 7-5

Qualifying Round Three – Beat Mayar Sherif (4th Qualifying seed), 6-1 6-4

First Round – Beat Stefanie Voegele (LL), 6-2 6-3

Second Round – Beat Zhang Shuai, 6-2 6-4

Third Round – Beat Sara Sorribes Tormo, 6-0 6-1

Fourth Round – Beat Shelby Rogers, 6-2 6-1

Quarter-final – Beat Belinda Bencic (11), 6-3 6-4

Semi-final – Beat Maria Sakkari (17), 6-1 6-4

Final – Beat Leylah Fernandez, 6-4 6-3

Leylah Fernandez 

First Round – Beat Ana Konjuh, 7-6(3) 6-2

Second Round – Beat Kaia Kanepi, 7-5 7-5

Third Round – Beat Naomi Osaka (3), 5-7 7-6(2) 6-4

Fourth Round – Beat Angelique Kerber (16), 4-6 7-6(5) 6-2

Quarter-final – Beat Elina Svitolina (5), 6-3 3-6 7-6(5)

Semi-final – Beat Aryna Sabalenka (2), 7-6(3) 4-6 6-4

Final – Beaten by Emma Raducanu (Q), 4-6 3-6

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.