Emma Raducanu’s phenomenal US Open win leads to dramatic boost for British grassroots tennis
Emma Raducanu winning the US Open this year saw an estimated 100,000 Brits pick up a tennis racket in the two months following her Grand Slam victory.
19-year-old Raducanu shocked the world when she became the first ever qualifier to win a Grand Slam tournament at the US Open this year, achieving such a monumental feat at just 18 years old and doing so without dropping a single set against some of the world’s best.
As a result of her incredible breakthrough season, the British sensation broke into the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) top 20 and won the WTA Newcomer of the Year and BT Action Woman of the Year awards.
Starlet Raducanu has also been nominated for the prestigious BBC Sports Personality of the Year award alongside some of Great Britain’s finest sportspeople.
According to data from grassroots sports management app Spond, after analysing user data it was found that an estimated 100,000 Brits have taken up tennis in the two months following Raducanu’s historic US Open win.
This data shows an increase of 119% in 2021, with approximately 42% of this growth coming after Raducanu’s success at Flushing Meadows.
Similarly, former British number one Jo Durie feels Raducanu is inspiring other young British tennis players and motivating them to aspire for greatness.
Spond CEO Trine Falnes said that “Raducanu’s impact on British tennis has been nothing short of remarkable, creating a unique opportunity for the sport to move forward at the grassroots level.
“Investment is needed from the government, the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association, Great Britain’s governing tennis body) and individual clubs to ensure British players are regularly competing for Grand Slams titles in the future.
“With investment comes opportunity – for clubs, coaches and organisations. As we’ve seen in the many media interviews in recent weeks, thousands of hours went into that match point at the Arthur Ashe Stadium.
“Without investment, coaches are unable to support and develop players to a point where a professional career is even a consideration,” Falnes emphasised.
“However, grassroots sport provides more than a pathway to a career. For some, it’s an opportunity to remain physically active, improve mental health and make connections in the community.
“Regardless of what motivates people to play, investment will ensure that grassroots sport is able to provide a pathway for promising young talents and also a safe, enjoyable environment for casual players.”
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