August 4, 2021

Stupor at Wimbledon over the abandonment of Emma Raducanu, the new sensation of British tennis: it was difficult to breathe

Emma Raducanu
In the middle of the game, Emma Raducanu felt serious physical discomfort; the atmosphere was too strong for his sudden explosion on the courts. Photo: Ben STANSALL / AFP

It is a sign of these times, enhanced by the pandemic, by Covid-19 and by the aftermath of a new, traumatic world. It happens to all kinds of people: young and old, office workers and elite athletes. It happens, for example, to Emma Raducanu, an 18-year-old wonder girl, jovial and fresh, intelligent and funny, who two months ago went to school, put aside the last exams in mathematics and economics and devoted himself fully to tennis, his true passion.

He was doing wonders: reached the knockout stages of Wimbledon. In London they talk about his sympathy and his backhand crossed on the run until, suddenly, a call for health care stops everything. An individual sport, the overwhelming loneliness on one side of the counter and, at the same time, a packed stadium. The match was losing it 6-4 and 3-0, but it really is the least of it.

Emma Raducanu
Emma Raducanu felt that it was difficult for her to breathe. Photo: Ben STANSALL / AFP

Palpitations, feeling of pain in the chest. The laughter had turned into anguish, in a packed stadium, when all eyes were on his figure. Too much in such a short time. A volcano of sensations from which few come out standing tall, firm, haughty. He requested medical assistance and had to leave in the general stupor. The triumph, sour, then, went to the Australian Ajla Tomljanovic, which among the global support for the little girl, had a luxury backing, and the Italian Matteo Berrettini, her boyfriend. But there was no room for laughter, no celebration. The anguish was general.

Hours later, Wimbledon officially announced that the reason for the withdrawal was due to “breathing problems”, without specifying further details.

Its inspiring and multicultural story deserves to be told once again. She is an aspiring star installed in the 338th position of the WTA who two months ago attended classes at Newstead Wood School. Something like the “new Coco Gauff” represents a melting pot, so common in these times of globalization. Three continents, four countries. She was born in Toronto, Canada, her father, Ian, is Romanian and her mother, Renee, is Chinese, but they have resided in Great Britain since the age of two. The family is dedicated to finances and, for a few weeks, they have seen with different eyes the two-handed setback to the little warrior’s career, a real delight.

Emma Raducanu
During the second set, Emma Raducanu did not feel well and had to leave. Photo: Ben STANSALL / AFP

From his dad he inherited the drive to take risks; of the mother, discipline. In order not to generate conflicts at home, she admires two great champions: a Simona Halep y Li Na. One is Romanian, the other Chinese. “I prefer to go to the round of 16 and not pass my next exams, economics and mathematics …”, he had said, days ago. The wish was fulfilled.

Before the Cathedral, achieved in his career modest $ 39,558. With an angelic face and brave power, he lives between two worlds. The economy and drives. “I’m trying to build my tennis career, but continuing my studies at school helped me to have another group of friends that I can also hang out with. It is completely different, another way of life. It is also an escape valve for me, it is important to have something other than tennis to keep my mind occupied. Training only fills you up for a few hours each day, so this allows me to have an active mind. On the court, sometimes I think that, tactically, I am more astute than others”, he says.

Emma Raducanu hits the ball with soul and life, in a section of the match against Ajla Tomljanovic (Photo by Ben STANSALL / AFP

Between the lines, he had left a couple of sentences that could cause a certain noise in a specialist in psychology. Emma pushes herself so hard that she won’t accept a grade lower than a ten or a couple of serial losses. “I think my parents just think I’m crazy. I won’t accept anything less than an A… I think that’s what people around me think of me. I also feel that I have to live up to that expectation now. “he reflected. And in recent days, he had to put his cell phone aside, because the explosion of his figure had overcome everything.

John McEnroe, a tennis legend, perfectly understood what happened to Emma Raducanu. And he remembered an old story: I saw (Pete) Sampras throw up at the US Open. He pulled it off. So this happens. It is not the first or the last time, it only shows you how emotional and mental this sport is … “

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