‘I was in exam halls’ – Emma Raducanu dismisses Iga Swiatek comparison
Emma Raducanu has disregarded the idea that she and newly-crowned world number one Iga Swiatek have had similar young success.
Swiatek announced herself to the world by winning Roland Garros 2020 while unseeded, while Raducanu came almost from the blue to win the 2021 US Open, the first qualifier ever to win a Slam title.
As such, it may appear that the Brit, 19, and the Pole, 20, have shared similar trajectories.
However, that is something Raducanu has rejected ahead of meeting Swiatek for the first time at WTA tour level in the quarter-finals of the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix.
She told Eurosport on whether you could compare her and Swiatek: “I wouldn’t say so to be honest.
“Iga (Swiatek) had been playing on the tour a lot longer [when she won the French Open].
“I feel she had a lot more experience in matches and had been playing full-time for a lot longer, whereas I was in exam halls [taking my A Levels] until last summer.
Swiatek made her WTA tour level debut at the 2019 Australian Open, meaning she had a full 2019 season before eventually winning Roland Garros in 2020.
That appearance in Paris was her second at the clay Slam, a 17th main draw appearance at tour level and a sixth Major appearance overall.
By contrast, Raducanu made her tour level debut in June 2021, just three weeks before her Slam debut at Wimbledon.
The US Open where she claimed her surprise victory was just the teen’s fourth tour level appearance, second Slam appearance and US Open debut.
Raducanu continued: “This is my first full year where I’m playing tournaments in back-to-back weeks.
“It’s all a learning curve for me but we’re both young and hopefully we’ll be playing again in the future.”
Raducanu can faced Swiatek once before, in the quarter-finals of the girls’ singles at Wimbledon 2018.
The Pole won comfortably that day 6-0, 6-1 before going on to claim the title.
On her chances against Swiatek in Stuttgart, Raducanu said: “Of course it’s impressive what she’s achieved.
“She’s in great form and number in the world, so I feel like for me there’s no expectations, no pressure.
“I’m just going to go out there and swing because I feel like clay isn’t exactly labelled as ‘my surface’ but I get to take her on.
“It’s going to be a challenge for sure but one I’m looking forward to.”
Raducanu’s match against Swiatek will be just her fifth professional match on clay, while Swiatek has a Roland Garros title and WTA 1000 Italian Open 2021 title to her name on the surface.
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