Emma Raducanu - Indian Wells 2023

Emma Raducanu backed to be ‘competing for Grand Slams soon’

Jack Draper has backed fellow Brit Emma Raducanu to be back challenging for Grand Slam titles in the next couple of years.

Raducanu shot to fame when she won the 2021 US Open when she was just 18 years old to become the only player to ever win a major as a qualifier.

She has struggled badly since, and is currently working her way back from surgery on both wrists and an ankle.

Draper, though, is expecting her to return stronger than ever and extra motivated to succeed, and he thinks it’s only a matter of time before her talent starts shining through again.

“I think if she can get herself to a good fitness level, she’ll be right up there with the best in the world and she’ll be competing for Grand Slams again,” Draper told the Express.

“It’s not a quick fix, it takes a lot of time. She’s motivated to want to come back.

“I think maybe with my shoulder injury, you come off court and you have all this time watching people win things on the big stages and you feel like you’re not being productive, you gain that love for it back and you gain that motivation to want to be back to where you were.

“I know that at some point next year, the year after that she’s going to be back to being in those finals and those big positions because she’s got everything it takes. It’s just a matter of when.

“When she’s fit, she’s an incredible player. I think she’s been struggling with injuries for a long time. I think people forget that before the US Open she was still in school.

“She didn’t have a lot of training. Obviously, she had that huge run and achieved what people dream of achieving in their whole career.

“And then obviously I think to expect so much of her after that is a bit of a mistake because she hasn’t maybe got a lot of that physical foundation and the experience of playing on the tour and all those things that all those other players have.”

How long has Emma Raducanu been injured?

Raducanu’s most recent injury spell has sidelined her since the 6-2, 6-1 loss she suffered at the hands of Jelena Ostapenko at the WTA500 in Stuttgart in April.

In 2021, she became the first qualifier in Open Era tennis to win a Grand Slam title, and what’s more, she did so without dropping a single set.

However, since then, Raducanu has been grappling with the pressure and expectation that naturally follows.

Her meteoric rise to fame meant that she was never really settled on tour, and despite the significance of her success, unnecessary pressure soon grew out of control.

Following her second round loss at Wimbledon in 2022, Raducanu responded to the attention she was receiving: “Why is there any pressure? It’s a joke, I’m still 19 and I literally won a Slam.

“If anything, the pressure is on those who haven’t done that.”

She has, though, confirmed she will be back for the Australian Open next month, as long as she doesn’t suffer any setbacks in her recovery.

READ NEXT: Emma Raducanu reveals ‘provoking’ reason for parting ways with coaches

 Join >> Receive $700/£600 of tennis gear from the Tennishead CLUB

 Social >> FacebookTwitter & YouTube

 Read >> World’s best tennis magazine

 Shop >> Lowest price tennis gear from our trusted partner 

Michael Graham, Editor, has been a professional sports journalist for his whole career and is especially passionate about tennis. He's been the Editor of for over 5 years and loves watching live tennis by visiting as many tournaments as possible. Michael specialises in writing in-depth features about the ATP & WTA tours.