‘The ability is there’ – Tim Henman backs Emma Raducanu Wimbledon title hopes
Former British number one Tim Henman has called for Emma Raducanu to focus solely on what she can control and to forget about the expectations as a home crowd favourite ahead of Wimbledon
Next week, Emma Raducanu is expected to return to the tournament that kick-started her career a year ago as she aims to better her achievement of reaching the fourth round in 2021.
The expectations are high on the teenager, yet former home crowd favourite and world number four Tim Henman has suggested that Raducanu should not be burdened by the pressure so early on in her career as she has time on her side to win an historic Wimbledon title.
Reflecting on his own experiences, Tim Henman told reporters in a recent interview, “There is an expectation there, but it is something you can’t control.
“I was getting blamed for the weather and when that happens, you know expectations are a little too high!.
“She has got a very wise head on young shoulders and the two things she can control are her prepartion and performance. That is what she should be focusing on.
“The way she played in New York (at the US Open) was just incredible. You think of all the greats in our sport and no one has ever qualified and made the final of a Slam, let alone reach a final and win it.
“The ability is there and we just have to stay patient. If things don’t go according to play at Wimbledon this year, she has got many more ahead of her.”
Henman also discussed the Bromley born teen’s injury woes which have hampered her first full season on tour.
Most recently, the US Open champion managed just seven games against Viktorija Golubic at last week’s Nottingham Open before retiring with a side injury.
Former Wimbledon semi-finalist Henman insisted that improving her physicality is just as as important as fine tuning her game as she aims to win more big titles.
“Her preparation has not been ideal and no one will be more frustrated than Emma herself because she wants to be out there competing.
“The matches she has lost this year on tour, very little has been about her tennis. It’s been more to do with the physicality. She needs to build up that resilience and have time away from tournament play to build up those training blocks.
“From 12 months ago, it has just been non-stop and the opportunity she had at the end of last year was ruined because she got Covid and was stuck in a hotel room for three weeks.
“So she has had plenty of bumps in the road, but you have got to stay patient because she is on a long journey and is going to be fine.”
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