How far did Emma Raducanu expect to go at the US Open?

Tom Avery September 9, 2021
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Emma Raducanu is two matches away from becoming US Open champion and the young Brit is savouring every moment of her unexpected run.

The 18-year-old swept aside Olympic champion and Swiss 11th seed Belinda Bencic 6-3 6-4 last night to become the first qualifier to reach the last four at Flushing Meadows.

Raducanu will face 17th seed Maria Sakkari for a place in the final. Sakkari became the first Greek woman to reach the US Open singles semi-finals after she beat fourth seed and this year’s Wimbledon runner-up Karolina Pliskova 6-4 6-4.

How far did Emma Raducanu think she would go at the US Open?

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After coming through qualifying to compete in just her second Grand Slam, Raducanu has yet to drop a set during her time in New York.

The modest teenager, who will surpass Johanna Konta and Heather Watson to become British women’s number one, admitted she didn’t even know whether she would qualify for the main draw.

Speaking after her quarter-final win (Sky Sports), Raducanu said: “I didn’t expect to be here (semi-finals) at all. I think my flights were booked at the end of qualifying, so it’s a nice problem to have.

“I’m just really enjoying the experience. Out there on the court today, I was saying to myself: ‘This could be the last time you play on Ashe so you might as well just go for it and enjoy everything.’”

Set up for an all teenager final?

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Raducanu joined fellow teenager Leylah Fernandez in the last four. Just like Raducanu at Wimbledon and in New York, the Canadian starlet has enjoyed her own break-out tournament.

The pair are both one win away from an all teenager final. Fernandez faces Belarusian second seed Aryna Sabalenka, who reached the semi-finals at Wimbledon this year.

But after producing upsets against Grand Slam champions Naomi Osaka and Angelique Kerber, as well as ousting fifth seed Elina Svitolina in the quarter-finals, Fernandez will be targeting another scalp.

When will the semi-finals take place?

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Fernandez versus Sabalenka is the first match on Arthur Ashe and they are expected to walk out on court at about midnight (BST) on Friday (10 September).

Raducanu and Sakkari will follow the first semi-final so it will take place in the early hours of Friday morning (BST).

Both matches will be live on Amazon Prime.

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