Mats Wilander, Barbara Schett defend Emma Raducanu after surprise AO exit

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Mats Wilander, Barbara Schett defend Emma Raducanu after surprise AO exit

Former seven-time Grand Slam champion Mats Wilander thinks Emma Raducanu doesn’t deserve to be criticized after suffering a surprise loss to Danka Kovinic. Raducanu, who is enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 18 in the world, suffered a surprise exit on Thursday as world No.

98 Kovinic stunned the Briton 6-4 4-6 6-3. Raducanu was hampered by blisters and took several medical breaks during the match to re-apply strapping. Raducanu was greatly hampered by blisters as she couldn’t properly serve and hit forehands .

“Emma Raducanu [showed] unbelievable fight," Wilander said in the Eurosport Cube. "She had a huge blister on her right hand and at some points couldn't really hit a forehand at all. "It's not a disappointment to me.

It needs to not be for Emma Raducanu or the British media, and for her sponsors. This was a great effort against a really good player in Kovinic. I take my hat off. She couldn't even shake hands!”

‘Raducanu has done well at the Grand Slams in recent month’

"In Wimbledon she reached the fourth round, at the US Open she won, and in the Australian Open she won a great first round against a former Grand Slam champion in Sloane Stephens.

Then she played a fantastic match tonight,” Wilander continued. "She is on her way. She won the Grand Slam - that's over. Now we start being a professional tennis player. That is where she is at." Former world No.

7 Barbara Schett also weighed in on Raducanu being hampered by blisters against Kovinic. “I never got blisters on my hands but I did on my foot, right underneath my toe," Schett explained. "At one point I was really struggling.

Little blisters can be so nasty and can really limit you on the court - I can't imagine how bad it would be to have it on your right hand."